Castello di Amorosa, (the Castle of Love in Italian)..a Tuscan castle built over 15 years duration and opened in 2007, made to look like it was built in 10th-12th century Italy. This castle has a drawbridge, a dry moat, 107 rooms, a 500 year old fireplace in the Great Hall which has 22 foot high ceilings, a Tuscan farmhouse next to the castle, chickens and sheep in REAL primitive stables on the grounds, towers, and a church that holds old Latin Catholic Masses for the public.
Daryl Sattui opened his first winery on a shoestring from the proverbial VW bus way back when and was so successful, he opened up his second winery, the Castello di Amoroso in 2007. He's 67 today and still adding onto the castle. He had 850,000 bricks shipped over from Italy, the terra cotta roofing tiles, the ironwork, it was all done in Italy and shipped over, two Italian brothers were hired to paint all the frescoes in the Great Hall. One of the brothers had to go back to Italy, so the remaining brother finished the painting of the frescoes and left his modern day mark on the wall. (small photo) In case you can't see it, it's his online address in case you want to hire him!
|The Great Hall|
|some of the iron work|
This is a working winery, and on the wonderful tour we took with Christina, we saw several levels of the castle, including the storage cellars in the caves and tasting rooms, AND the torture chamber, with a 300 year old Iron Maiden. I think they would put prisoners inside the Iron Maiden, then shut the door and you would get skewered. The winery uses hawks and owls to hunt predators that harm the vines--gophers and moles...I like that--they are working hard to be environmentally friendly in their winemaking! Christina was a great guide--very funny, very smart and knowledgable about the wines. We learned a lot of interesting things on the tour about the castle and winemaking.
|View from the tower to the vineyards|
|Enter, my sweet!|