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Eating in FlorencePeople ask me all the time where to eat in Florence, the city I call home. Recently someone blogged about ten places to eat incredibly well in Florence. I disagreed with most choices. And found the list somewhat simplistic, impressed with trendy Michelin-starred places, not really what a visitor needs ...
Sicily, Part 6We were on our way to Mount Etna, my favorite active volcano. I was returning to the village of Linguaglossa - population 5000, 14 butcher shops, my kind of place. We'd be based at the delightful hotel Shalai Resort, contemporary décor in a restored 19th century noble residence with frescoed ...
The Northeast, Part 3: Carso and TriesteWe began our day at Vodopivic, creators of the vitovska that perked my initial interest in the Carso area. Winemaker Paolo Vodopivic wasn't home so his brother Walter showed us around. We visited the stone cellars, admired the sunken-into-the-earth amphorae, old-style, new-wave, all-natural winemaking techniques. We tasted a few vintages ...
Vino Vino VinoWine festival south of Verona It's been a few years since I've gone to Vinitaly, Italy's largest wine fair, in Verona. It's huge, chaotic, and difficult to navigate, with many regional Italian pavilions crammed with booths. Some stands look like Disneyland castles, with private tasting rooms, and there's plenty of rustic, ...
The Grand Tour Part 4We drove through countryside near Vittoria to visit COS, one of my favorite Sicilian wineries and agriturismo farms, with owners Titta Cilia and the appropriately named Giusto (correct, just) Occhipinti, the "C" and "O" of COS. More about the "S" later.COS is part of a natural wine movement that's been ...
A Trip Across the NorthI've just returned from a trip to northern Italy with food-loving friends. My luggage was light except for gifts for my favorite restaurateurs, lemons from Sorrento and bottles of incredible, just-pressed extra virgin from Castello di Ama. Vito Santoro, "l'artista", picked us up in his van, we headed for Piemonte, met ...
Pure VenetoBrandino and Marie Brandolini d' Adda sound too good to be true. They are young, good-looking, and live in a Venetian palace. He' s a count from Veneto. She's a chicly dressed Parisian. He makes terrific wine in the northeastern Italian region of Friuli. She has a Venetian-glass company, Laguna ...