There is an excellent range of cafes and restaurants in the immediate area catering for all tastes and budgets, some for the rich and famous. The restaurant Canta Napoli, 5 minutes away on the road to Camucia, is inexpensive and has an excellent reputation for fish dishes. Booking is usually essential. Il Falconiere is perhaps the most expensive, whereas many film stars have eaten in Il Teatro. Albergo Portole has wonderful views. There are outdoor cafes and two or three winebar/clubs that cater primarily for the young and trendy. Information is the House Book.
The Cortonese have a siesta from 1pm to 4pm but the town really comes to life around 8 pm in the spring and summer when the evening passeggiata (stroll) takes place. The cinemas and theatres in the region usually start at 9.30pm.
Tuscan wine is famous throughout the world. There is a vast range of quality and prices available from the COOP (those over £50.00 are on the top shelf) and the highest quality can be bought from an enoteca - wine shop in Cortona. The best known area in this region is around Montepulciano and Montelcino where you can taste the wine and have a meal in the vineyards. Details are in the House Book. This area was famous for wine whereas the Cortona area was famous for oil. However, some Cortonese wines are now extremely good and the area is becoming famous. You can now find Cortenese wine in the UK. There are wine tasting vists to vineyards.
The grape harvest is in late October depending on the weather with the olive harvest in November. It is possible to see the olives being crushed to make oil in a small factory (fattoria) nearby. The hamlet of San Pietro di Cielgliolo has a small festa to celebrate the oil harvest on 8th December.
There is usually a sagra (an open air local festival) each Saturday in one or other of the villages around throughout the summer where the local food and wine are sampled with entertainment and a dance later in the evening. There is always some entertainment on in a nearby village or town.
Montepulciano - Famous for good quality wine, Montepulciano has a cask rolling and medieval parade approximately the last Sunday in August.