We landed in Milan and took the train to Venice. The days we were there the weather was warm and humid and the city beautiful.
We started our first day by taking the vaporetto (ferry) down the grand canal.
We got off at St. Marks Square and were surprised to find the square flooded. So we rolled up our clothes and took off our shoes.
The next day for lunch we went to a great cafeteria for lunch.
Then we walked around and visited the Peggy Guggenheim Museum (a must if you’re into modern art).
We headed back to St. Marks Square and went up into the tower to get some great views.
Pistachio gelato, so good!
We started dinner early with cichetti (small individual appetizers) and wine.
Then for dinner I had branzino and Al had pizza, of course (If he has the choice, it’s always pizza).
We rented a car and drove south to Montepulciano in Tuscany and stayed at this lovely family-run hotel.
The super sweet owner Roberto wanted photos with both of us!
The town was perched atop a hill with winding steep streets and endless beautiful building facades.
For dinner I had handmade pick pasta with pecorino cheese.
The next day there was more exploring and wine tasting!
The wineries were so incredible. They’re all centuries old and are built into the hills, so that the barrel rooms are deep underground with nice constant cool temperatures. The wine of Montepulciano is vino nobile.
This room was for aging pecorino.
The next day we drove through a few other small towns.
For the next night we stayed in Civita de Bagnoreggio, a medieval hilltop town connected to the surrounding area by a pedestrian bridge.
We stayed in a pretty cool 3 room hotel.
For dinner, more handmade pasta, walnut pesto.
We drove to Rome, returned our car and started exploring.
Dinner: simple pasta, tomato & garbanzo bean soup, and cacio e pepe (parmesan and pepper) pasta.
For our full day, we started at the Vatican.
Then headed to the Pantheon.
After a break for a lemon granita, we toured the Forum and the ruins were so incredibly well preserved.
Italy was amazing!! I wish I had eaten more!! I want to go back!