Furnirussi Tenuta, Serrano
A step into a fig haven, a place for the mind and body to escape into pure relaxation, while your soul experiences a full Italian makeover. An Apulian makeover for that matter, that lingers with slow chicness, divine cuisine and authentic charm. In the midst of the largest organic fig plantation in Europe with 2o hectares and 4500 fig trees exists a luxury resort called Furnirussi Tenuta, in the heart of the Grecia Salentina. Already when you drive up to this majestic estate, you are welcomed by an array of wild herb bushes followed by an explosion of green and purple figs that lead you to the gates of the manner. It is all about first impressions and here they have done it just about right making every step of the way an experience to indulge in. As you all know, I am always on the hunt for the next best Italian masseria and Furnirussi spills on the top of my list. Here it is all about that tranquil lifestyle, where the mediterranean contemporary country vibe is the foundation of the atmosphere… and it all really comes down to that organic way of living, a build up of luxurious momentum.
Recommended by Condé Nast Traveller and being apart of the Chateaux and Hotel Collection, Chef Alan Ducasse also selected Furnirussi Tenuta as their featured gourmet restaurant. The flurry of press and increase in Puglian tourism attracts celebrities and diverse globe trotters that all come to enjoy the marvellously cultivated Italian simplicity.
‘Let me take you back to my experiences’
Some of you may remember my previous posts or IG pictures about our last Furnirussi experience and I can’t wait to make new memories this year! It is that feeling when the hot southern sun warms your body as the lake-like pool invites you for a cooling swim. That calmness after a morning workout in the outdoor gym or a yoga session in the serene Mediterranean garden. Just reading my book and lounging on the sunbeds while listening to the birds chirping in the background made it all that much more relaxing, tucked away in a luxurious hideaway. I still remember that first bite of our lunch, the carpaccio melted in my mouth and the refreshing gazpacho was made from ingredients straight from the garden that we of course, sipped down with chilling rosé.
It was that moment of drinking prosecco in bed on a late night tucked in between high thread count-sheets while listening to the raindrops outside. Mr. N and I were both wrapped in our bathrobes watching a movie feeling cozy and luxurious. With the rooms clean lines, minimalistic elegant interiors, floor-to-ceiling windows and wide garden-facing terraces, it was remarkably easy to feel comfortable and relaxed. Better yet, it was the smell of that lavender after the rain that wafted into our room as I opened our door to the large bushes. Every morning I literally stopped to smell them for a couple of minutes just to admire their beauty and capture the moment of their lingering aroma that I wish I could bottle up and capture forever.
Mr. N and I also enjoyed the fact that the masseria is only 12 km from Otranto, that is a favourite coastal town of ours in Puglia. We fell in love with it last year, the turquoise sea and cozy narrow white streets with lots of cute restaurants. I’m very excited to announce that in 2017, Luigi De Santis (owner of Furnirussi Tenuta) together with Gabriele Sticchi and Emanuele Moscara (owners of “Il Maestrale” a popular lounge bar in Otranto) are launching a new beach club called “Twiga Otranto”. The concept follows the high-end line of things in terms of quality service, foods and charming location only a new km from Furnirussi itself. It will include 120 white gazebos sprawling luxuriantly over a beautiful green field and smooth stones overlooking the clear blue Adriatic sea. It will have a restaurant (hello fresh seafood!) that serves fish and seafood coming daily directly from fishermen. Twiga Otranto will also include a daytime and night private club and an infinity pool that overlooks the entire landscape. I already see myself lounging around here, talk about travel chic!
‘The Organic way of life, is the best way’
‘Organic Fig Jam’ – need I say more?!
I still dream of the fig jam at breakfast that I mixed in with natural yogurt and fresh fruit or piled on my ricotta loaf, it was simply perfect. The flavour of the jam is invigorating, smooth, fresh and strong. For a fig obsessed individual like myself, I was pleased to know Furnirussi produced their own jam, which of course makes a lot of sense since they are nestled into the largest fig grove in Europe. I can honestly say, I have never tasted better figs in my life and I have had a lot of them! As of now they are producing a new less sweeter jam for the palette containing 99.70% organic fig and 0.30% natural malic acidifier to avoid that extreme sweetness. They are produced in two sizes 132gr and 33gr, a hotel & resorts edition which is quite convenient. I’m looking forward to trying the new jam, as I’m a fan of less sweetness, I think it will be great addition to cheeses, in smoothies, cold cuts and gamely flavours and I already see it centered at our Christmas table!
As the importance of organic farming is at constant growth, Furnirussi Tenuta has also expanded their garden focusing on cultivating fresh seasonal veggies that also include datterino tomatoes that is a rare and delicious specie. Moreover, as of this year they are beginning to produce their own organic extra virgin olive oil. As already mentioned that Furnirussi Tenuta is part of the C&H collection, this being no surprise with their fresh flare on traditional Salento cooking that is beautifully combined with modern creativity. Savouring seasonal produce where the chef strictly cooks from their own fields or within support from the local community is a vital element in this artistic kitchen.