September 17 2014 / Food & Wine

Scheggino Enticements

Scheggino, Umbria

A five-kilometer-long tunnel now links the Valle Umbra Nord (North Umbrian Valley) pastoral landscapes – sweeps of vineyards, silvery olive


September 4 2014 / Events

Picantissima Pila!

Pila, Umbria

According to some scholars, the late Etruscan life-sized bronze sculptural masterpiece, “the Orator” (now in the Museo Nazionale Arcaelogico di


August 7 2014 / Food & Wine

Make it Peachy!

Italy

Back in our “farming years,” we’d ride our old Gilera motorcycle to nearby Bettona for peach-picking in July. I’d rather


July 7 2014 / Places

Talla, Town of Uncertainties

Talla, Tuscany

Pino dubbed Talla, tiny town in the Casentino Valley, “il paese delle incertezze.” Yes, “uncertainties” threaded through our visit there. Where


June 19 2014 / Local Interest

Tracking Down Tuscany’s Last Mill

Loro Ciuffenna, Tuscany

The colorful stuccoed houses of Loro Ciuffenna seem stacked like multi-colored children’s blocks along the gorge flanking the Ciuffenna River


June 6 2014 / Events

A Glorious Festa della Repubblica

Gubbio. Umbria

I wonder if Gubbio’s children realize that their Corsa dei Ceri Piccoli is probably the most unique celebration of la Festa della Repubblica


May 29 2014 / Events

Where Wild Asparagus Reigns

Eggi, Umbria

Eggi (pop. about 400), medieval castle village near Spoleto, is celebrating la Sagra degli Asparagi triumphantly this year: with all the rain,


May 13 2014 / Events

La Grande Passione dei Piccoli

Umbria

Missing out on la passione, means missing the full Italian experience. La passione is in the Italian DNA. And that


April 17 2014 / Places

Poppi: Castles and Falcons

Poppi, Tuscany

Medieval churches and hilltop castles crowning gently curving slopes – emerald green in springtime, sprinkled with wildflowers like confetti –


April 4 2014 / Local Interest

L’Aquila Must Soar again

L'Aquila, Abruzzo

L’Aquila (“the eagle”) must once again take flight: now, its wings are fractured. Graced with medieval churches and elegant Renaissance and


March 24 2014 / Places

Trequanda Treasures and Curiosities

Trequanda, Tuscany

Incredible: treasures wherever you head in Italy, no matter how tiny, how “insignificant” the locale. This country is a treasure


March 7 2014 / Food & Wine

Pleasures of Piacenza

Piacenza, Emilia-Romagna

Founded by the Romans, devastated by the Goths and resurrected by medieval noble families, this elegant Emilia Romagna city flourished


February 26 2014 / Food & Wine

World’s Best Street Food

Palermo, Sicily

The world’s oldest – and best – “street food”? It’s that of Palermo where – for centuries – the piazzas


February 11 2014 / Art & Archaeology

Bewitched

Foligno, Umbria

People might line up to see a president, to ask a star’s autograph, to shake hands with a music idol,


January 30 2014 / Food & Wine

The Torcolo of San Costanzo

Perugia, Umbria

The Torcolo di San Costanzo is a rich raisin, pinon, and citron-laden, sweet bread created in honor of San Costanzo,


January 15 2014 / Events

Sant’Antonio’s Dish

Santa Maria degli Angeli, Umbria

“Che Sant’Antonio li benedica” (May St. Anthony bless them), an elderly signore murmured as he caressed the collies. Patron saint of


December 20 2013 / Events

Natale del Poverello

Assisi, Umbria

In Assisi, the contest of “presepi artistici” is on! The locals (including school classes) create cribs in every imaginable artistic


December 11 2013 / Places

Tuscan Treasures in Winter Hibernation

Chiusdino, Tuscany

The hilltowns of central Italy slumber in winter hibernation: no tourists at all and not many “locals” affront icy winds


November 26 2013 / Food & Wine

Il Tacchino di Pino

Umbria

While personally we do celebrate Thanksgiving despite that fact that it is not a holiday here in Italy, we no


November 21 2013 / Food & Wine

Peara’… not la pera

Verona, Veneto

Don’t confuse “peará” (an accent on that final “a”) with “pera” (“pear”). A cucina povera dish originating in the 9th-century


November 11 2013 / Local Interest

Castiglione del Lago: It’s for the Birds

Castiglion del Lago, Umbria

“It’s for the birds”. Well, it was almost “for the birds”, that medieval guard tower of Castiglione del Lago overlooking Lake


October 29 2013 / Events

Saffron Takes Over

Citta' della Pieve, Umbria

Try to excise Italy from its culinary traditions? Impossible. Italians socialize over food, and live their town’s traditions through culinary


October 9 2013 / Local Interest

Note from a Papagirl

Assisi, Umbria

Daniela and Paola sipped cappuccini dreamily in “Papal euphoria” the day after Pope Francis’ visit to Assisi on October 4th.