Cicchetti in Venice, A Tasty Treat

IMG_1815Hello. It’s me. Yes, it’s been awhile but I’m back!  Since I last posted I’ve been on many journeys.  Up and down in Spain, Tuscany and Rome again, Venice for the first time and to the Friuli region of Italy.   The photo above is from Venice where the Spritz reigns king. Here you can see some examples of traditional cicchetti – small snacks or side dishes.  They come in so many versions,  you could exist on cicchetti your entire trip and not get tired of it.  I’ve been posting quite a few photos these days on my Instagram account (@bethbeeman) of my travels.  Check it out if you have the time.  Meanwhile, I’m back here.  Great to reconnect.
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Corzano e Paterno Winery

IMG_1125Last summer I visited this lovely winery, caseificio (CHEESE!) and olive farm located in San Casciano Val di Pesa, roughly halfway between Florence and Siena in Toscana.  Nestled in a remote location with breathtaking views of the countryside, it’s well worth the drive. We had the normal tour of the place, learned about the cheese and olive oil production and then settled down to TASTE!

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Charm and Grace. Buonanotte Lecce.

Have you ever been to Puglia? Lecce is a charming city nestled in the heel of the Italian boot.  She turns on her charm on warm summer evenings.

Stop by a local shop to taste a local favorite wine – Salice Salentino – and enjoy the moment. Salice Salentino is a red wine produced mainly from the Negroamaro grape. Do not miss this or your evening passeggiata.

Italy: Storybook Land and Dante’s Inferno

IMG_1194This is the amazing view from Castello di Monteriggioni in Toscana.  As the sun set after a long day of touring, wining and tasting we settled in at the Fattoria, Castello di Monteriggioni near Siena. Before dinner we walked all around this little town where there are no autos allowed.  Built in the early 1200’s, Monteriggioni is an excellent example of a medieval walled town. You can find mention of this fairyland in Dante’s Inferno.  Photo taken in May of 2012.

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Style. Even Italian beehives have it.

I spied these stylish Italian beehives during a splendid afternoon and evening at Agriturismo Il Greppo,  a lovely winery and bed/breakfast located somewhere between Siena and Montepulciano. Before dinner and as the sun was setting amongst the vineyard, we were treated to tour of the grounds, the production room and a full round of wine tasting.  As a result I left with an entire case of Vino Nobile.  Il Greppo wines are based on the Sangiovese grape. and their main production is Vino Nobile di Montepulciano.  We also tasted Rosso di Montepulciano, Chianti and Vin Santo. Una bella esperienza!