A few months ago I participated in a silent auction to benefit the earthquake victims here in Italy. One of the items I bid on and really wanted to win was a 2 night stay at POGGIO ETRUSO.

This is a bed and breakfast in Tuscany owned and run by cookbook author Pamela Sheldon Johns and artist husband Johnny Johns.  I have been Facebook friends with Pamela for many years and met her at a cooking demonstration she did in San Luis Obispo at Briget Binns cooking school and bed and breakfast REFUGIO.

Pamela is the author of 17 wonderful cookbooks. To know that I was going to get to spend time here was very exciting for me. I decided to share one of the nights with my friend Julie O’Keefe who was coming to visit me in Firenze. Julie’s two passions are cooking and gardening so I knew she would enjoy the experience.

Pamela’s B&B/cooking school is not far from Montepulciano and easy to get to by train.  I did not want to drive so took a taxi from the train station.

I was in awe from the moment we got out of the taxi and thrilled to be in such a gorgeous setting.

 

 

The grounds leading to the main house green and lush.  Every where you look is a photo opp.

The ground are really fabulous lush and every shade of green imaginable. There is also a pool behind those trees.

On 15 acres, this property is an active oliveto with over 800 olive trees and production of an exceptional organic extra-virgin olive oil.

There is also a vegetable garden where they grow artichokes, Swiss chard, cauliflower and a myriad of other vegetables and numerous fruit trees.  And of course every herb you can think of.

When we arrived Pamela had just finished a cooking class and they were getting ready for an olive oil and balsamic vinegar tasting followed by the lunch they had just prepared. We were invited to sit down and join them.  Talk about excellent timing on our part.  I am really sorry to say I took no pictures of this lunch, I was a little overwhelmed and hungry. 

The villa on the right is where Pamela and Johnny live and to the left is the B&B with 3 private apartments and a double room for holiday rental. They are tastefully decorated With antiques and artwork.

Pamela let Julie and I stay in the two bedroom apartment with a fully-equipped kitchen and living area with a fireplace plus we each had our own bathroom.

 

 

 

The main house where Pamela does all her magic is a cooks dream.  

 

Part of the lunch was hand made pasta and this was rolled out on this massive dinning room table. 

This rose arbor was a perfect place for Julie and I to capture this moment.

Of course they have chickens that I’m sure lay the tastiest eggs in the area.

It was fun for me to see Julie and Pamela share their gardening talents.

Pamela and Johnny’s family included two beautiful dogs and many cats. This is what makes a house a home.

Julie truly wanted to take one of these home.

 

On this stone wall is an example of Johnny’s artwork.  

I also bid on and won a piece of Johnny’s art that I really love and am still searching for the perfect frame.

I saved the best picture for last. Pamela Sheldon Johns and Johnny Johns are generous, creative, smart and really fun. I can’t wait to go back and use my other night.  Thank you!