Fortezza Medicea restaurant

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The medieval fortress and prison which houses the restaurant.

The Fortezza Medicea is an occasional restaurant in Volterra, Italy. It is housed in the town's Renaissance-era fortress (Fortezza Medicea, lit.Medician fortress), built 1474, which is a high-security prison for criminals serving no less than seven years.[1]

In 2006, the prison's administration began operating a restaurant within the prison, using inmates as staff, as a rehabilitation scheme.[2] The project was successful in attracting clients and the attention of the international press. Despite the inconveniences of dining in the Fortezza – clients must pass a background check and several checkpoints, and all cutlery is plastic – tables, as of 2007, had to be booked weeks in advance.[3]


  1. ^ Orth, Stephan (10 September 2007). "Gefängnis Volterra: Zu Gast bei Ganoven". Spiegel Online. Retrieved 30 January 2012.
  2. ^ Gumuchian, Marie-Louise (20 May 2008). "Guests give top marks to Italian gourmet jail". Reuters. Retrieved 30 January 2012.
  3. ^ Pisa, Nick (20 May 2007). "'They made me a pasta I couldn't refuse'". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 30 January 2012.

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Coordinates: 43°24′00″N 10°51′51″E / 43.40000°N 10.86417°E / 43.40000; 10.86417