August 11 2015 / Food & Wine

Tips from the “Virgil” of Sperlonga

Sperlonga, Lazio

(…cont’d from here.) …and Rocco, my “Sperlonga Virgil,” was right about Il Bistrot (and not only). After my first dinner


July 27 2015 / Places

Finding “a Virgil” in Sperlonga

Sperlonga, Lazio

“No time to leave fruit in your apartment, Anna, but try these,” dark-haired Rocco urged, as he plucked juicy midnight


July 16 2015 / Food & Wine

Mozzafiato Lenticchie di Castelluccio

Castelluccio, Umbria

(…cont’d from here.) …and no visit to Castelluccio is complete without a bowl of hearty zuppa di lenticchie, accompanied by


July 16 2015 / Food & Wine

Umbrian Lentil Soup

Umbria

For about 6 persons Ingredients: 1 lb lentils 1 carrot, finely-chopped 1 medium-sized stalk of celery, finely-chopped 1 small white


July 10 2015 / Events

Mozzafiato Majesty of il Piano Grande

Piano Grande, Umbria

Only mozzafiato (literally, “cutting off, truncating your breath”; more visceral than the English, “breathless”) can describe your first site of


June 19 2015 / Food & Wine

Spezia’s Sublime Seafood

La Spezia, Liguria

As we pushed open the osteria‘s dark green wooden door, lace curtains on the windows, our spezzina friend Monia asked


June 1 2015 / Events

A Glorious Festa della Repubblica

Gubbio. Umbria

Dear friends, we’re republishing this from last year in case anyone is in central Italy and free tomorrow. This is


May 19 2015 / Events

Floral Passione Explodes in Bucchianico

Bucchianico, Abruzzo

Floral eruption? Floral euphoria? An explosion of flowers? Floral delirium? Futile attempts to describe Bucchianico’s chromatic splendor, la Ciammaichella procession


April 28 2015 / Food & Wine

La Dea della Porchetta

Pie' di Moggio, Rieti, Lazio

There’s Ceres, goddess of grains, Minerva, goddess of wisdom and Flora, goddess of flowers, springtime and fertility. Demeter watches over


April 17 2015 / Events

In Foligno, “a Galileo Universe”

Foligno, Umbria

Where else can you join a Saturday night rapt crowd ranging from teens to the elderly in a 14th-century frescoed


March 20 2015 / Local Interest

The Singing Friar of Assisi

Assisi, Umbria

You’d probably re-think “re-incarnation” if you ever met Frate Alessandro, Assisi’s “singing friar.” Short (St. Francis was about 5’4”) with


March 12 2015 / Food & Wine

More than a Snack, this “Ciancino”

San Macario in Piano, Tuscany

West of Lucca in this nondescript village, you’ll note a rotund wine cask on the right with vino sfuso (wine by


March 2 2015 / Food & Wine

Nocera’s “Gourmet Corner”

Nocera Umbra, Umbria

Just peek into the kitchen and you’ll know you’re in a family-run restaurant: high school student Andrea is studying near


February 23 2015 / Local Interest

Il Bar, il Vero Cuore della Città

Assisi, Umbria

The graceful, stately 1st century BC Roman temple to Minerva reigns in the Assisi town center, surveying town life as


February 13 2015 / Local Interest

Heart and Soul of the Farmhouse Kitchen

Umbria

Winter weather predictions warn: “le irruzioni fredde sull’Italia potranno risultare particolarmente intense” (to sum it up, intense cold due). More


December 23 2014 / Events

Presepe Vivente, Still Alive

Umbria and Lazio

The crib scene comes alive – literally – in the mountain villages surrounding Assisi. After all, San Francesco was the


December 11 2014 / Art & Archaeology

Striking Gold in Lucignano

Lucignano, Tuscany

In the small main piazza, stately fortified towers, soaring like stalwart guards, bear witness to Lucignano’s bellicose past. For centuries contested


November 25 2014 / Events

Celebrating l’Albero del Pane

San Martino, Umbria

Rural people baptized it l’albero del pane (“the bread tree”) for this tree grew on the mountains where wheat would not grow (and if


November 6 2014 / Local Interest

Le Tre Sorelle

Abruzzo

From L’Aquila, we drove east towards majestic Gran Sasso, mountain behemoth, passing medieval hill towns – clinging like lichen to


October 24 2014 / Food & Wine

Gorga – Milking Time!

Gorga, Lazio

A bandana on his head to hold back dripping sweat, Giulio sat on the steps just outside the family caseificio