First of all, the shock to us was that the B and B looked exactly like it does in the pictures! It is a lovely stone building, with very well-maintained wood doors and a pretty outdoor dining patio covered in real grape vines. Also the windows had screens - thank goodness - so we could sleep with the windows open and let the breezes in. Orvieto towers above on a rock plateau and you think to yourself, there's no way to get up there without ropes or an elevator! But behold, a small sloping road, more like a path, leads behind the villa to the city and we walked there with the teenagers in 15 minutes. Magic! There is also an easy funicular if you are not in good shape.
We explored the city in the morning and evening and spent the hot midday resting by the sparkling clean pool. One could get used to this! The glittering gold duomo is spectacular and we had a fantastic meal a block away at Restaurant Maurizio, recommended by a friend. Don't miss their truffle pasta - very unique dish. There seemed to be fewer crowds of tourists in Orvieto than other cities - mostly Italians enjoying their own lovely city of shops, wild boar and cheese markets, and fun cafe/bar culture.
Alberto was as warm and welcoming as others say. He gave me a tour of their gardens and knowing I was a 'foodie' pointed out all the herbs and vegetables. The grilled chicken dinner on the terrace that he cooked for our group of eight was one of the highlights of our trip - fresh tomato salad and pesto pasta, wine, olives, and dessert - and for much less than another villa wanted to charge us for a similar meal. When we left I told him we were going to a villa near Florence with a kitchen and I was looking forward to cooking, and he surprised me with a gift of his own tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers, olives, and herbs. So generous, and so delicious. Thanks, Alberto!