Happiness, is a meal served on Tenuta La Scure’s beautiful panoramic
terrace, with a glass of chilled white wine (or pink or red) and a menu
offering ecological, home-grown dishes – from quail’s eggs with truffles, to
saffron gnocchi, to mixed roasts, to desserts of hand-picked woodland fruits
To call this working farm-restaurant-holiday home a piece of paradise,
would not be an exaggeration: the period hamlet in the mountains above Cortona
that Francesca and Kamil have painstakingly restored over the last five years -
bit by bit and much of it done by themselves – is a credit to their tenacity
and long-term vision.
The tended garden full of blooms and herbs attracts a wonderful array of
butterflies, the paddocks below, house their horses, sheep, bovines, pigs,
geese, ducks, pheasants, quail and chickens! Beyond are the fields where they
grow sustainable-farmed saffron and cultivate raspberries, blueberries and
blackberries…all of it extending into a beautiful panorama of mountain ranges.
When Francesca and Kamil first moved in to Tenuta La Scure in 2017, it
did not even remotely resemble what it is today. It was overgrown with
enormous, dark and somewhat menacing pines and was pretty much an abandoned,
falling-to-pieces old villa with a rabbit warren of rooms acting as a paradise
for bats. Somehow, hidden underneath its dank, dark exteriors (and interiors),
Francesca saw its ‘potential’.
After just her first viewing, she returned home to Kamil and said, “if
you’re as crazy as I am, let’s do it”. Kamil accepted the challenge. For the following two years while Francesca
worked at her day job –working in her father’s gold factory – Kamil embarked on
the immense task of clearing the land, ploughing the fields, fencing the
paddocks, planting the saffron and fruit bushes and starting on the renovation
of the first house they would use for guests.
The afternoons and weekends were spent working side by side – stripping
wood, white washing, laying floors, planting etc… all of this while navigating the corridors of
bureaucracy which would, eventually, allow Kamil to be registered as an Imprenditore
Agricolo (a farmer) for the 4 hectares of arable land owned by the property
and the 60 hectares of woodland.
This last winter they renovated yet another part of the house, providing
them with two guest houses (sleeping up to 8 people) and their own permanent
home. They still have a further 250 sqm to restore which they intend putting on
hold until 2024, giving themselves a small break from holding down what already
amounts to 3 jobs because the inexhaustible couple have also become excellent cooks
and run the Tenuta La Scure restaurant themselves.
Preparatory work tends to be done by Francesca – who has always had a
penchant for cooking – but once guests arrive it is Kamil who prepares the
antipasti, does the final touches and plates up, while Francesca looks after the
The activity began proper, in 2019. Their first guests were a lovely
Belgian family, they recall, and their first catering event, a birthday party
with 18 guests. Over the years, they
have had some unique experiences: a somewhat self-important writer who had
Kamil picking raspberries at 9.30 at night in order to prove they served
‘home-grown’ produce, to an Eastern European Count and Countess who ordered a
fish lunch out on the terrace and a roast goose ‘to go’.
Their well-deserved reputation for excellence extends to organising and
catering for large groups. They have hosted evenings for the Cortona mountain-revival
initiative, done weddings, baptisms, birthday parties, tour group lunches
etc…but it’s the more intimate Sunday lunches or Friday and Saturday night
dinners which they, personally, enjoy the most. It allows them to intermingle
with the guests, meet people from far and wide and on the level of pay back,
accept their guests’ glowing appreciation of this mountain retreat they have
brought back from the wilderness and turned into an idyllic haven…even in
Tenuta La Scure is
located in Teverina, Cortona.
Google maps: 43°18'25.26"N 12° 5'39.04"E
128,52044 Cortona (AR)
Reservations are required.
Whatsapp Francesca on: +39 340 251 8856
For lunch/dinner - Friday through to Sunday - 48 hour advance notice is
For lunches or dinners during the week – a minimum of 10 people is
For larger group events – a minimum of 14 days advance notice is