For this month’s #DolceVitaBloggers prompt “your perfect Italian day” I’m throwing all time, financial, and travel limitations out the window and imagining that anything (good) could happen! I highly suggest pairing this reading with Ellie Goulding’s song of the same name in the background just for fun! 😀 I also asked Alberto what his perfect day in Italy would be, and there’s no surprise that both of our perfect days revolve around food!
If I plan our perfect day…
My ideal day just about anywhere always includes the magic combination of good company, good food, sea and sun. So I’ve taken the creative liberty that if anything were possible, I’d take a tantalizing culinary journey through Italy for the day. Some of the things on this list I’ve already done, and some are in my travel plans while I’m in Italy for the next few months!
I’d start the day in regal and Baroque Torino, one of my most beloved cities in Italy because I spent a semester abroad there. Torino bars (cafés) are just dripping with elegance from their chandeliers to dark wooden paneling; the most beautiful I have ever seen. Now I can’t imagine not starting my day with a caffè (or strong cup of black coffee when in the US – because when in Rome), but can you imagine all those years ago when I studied in Torino I wasn’t into the strong stuff yet? I only drank coffee when I had to pull an all nighter because I had procrastinated too much and had an essay due the next day.
I especially want to start my day in Torino drinking a Bicerin, which is espresso with chocolate topped with cream. Can you also believe that I studied in Torino for an entire semester and never heard about this dream of a drink called a bicerin until my friend Ishita wrote about it on her blog?!?! To be fair, I studied there in 2005 before the days of social media (well FaceBook did exist…but I was still under a rock and had no idea what it was!) I didn’t even know what a Spritz was back then either!
I am thrilled that I this June my bicerin dreams will come true when I attend Turin Epicurian Capital, an annual food & literature event. Want to join me? Find out more about Turin Epicurian Capital here.
For lunch, I’d travel to the Monterosso al Mare in Liguria for the most memorable calamari I’ve ever had at Il Bocconcino. It’s made fresh to order and the spicy marinara dipping sauce just puts it over the top. Like I did with my cousin last summer, I’d grab a cone of calamari and a bottle of prosecco to go, and then sit on a nearby bench for the best dining view of the Mediterranean for under 20 Euros!!!
No trip to Liguria would be complete without some pesto Genovese. You know how sometimes you can barely remember what you ate last week, but some meals stick in your memory for a lifetime? My first peso Genovese from Ligura was unforgettable. Years ago we stayed in a tiny town just above the Cinque Terre, called Volastra, I believe. There was only one restaurant in town and I remember thinking…well, this better be good! And I kid you not, it was one of the best meals of my life (I still remember it vividly like 13 years later)! If you think you like pesto, wait until you try it made fresh in Liguria. It is always a vibrant bright green color, unlike the murky swamp green of commercial pesto available elsewhere. This pesto has ruined me for all other pestos, so that’s why I’d return on my perfect Italian day.
And why not have some pillowy focaccia too? Because on this day even our stomachs are limitless too. 😉
Then I’d walk off my food coma on the strada dell’amore with my amore.
Continuing south from Liguria, we’d have to stop in Tuscany for a little wine tasting, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano straight from the source. I’d drink until my lips are stained purple and I’m giddy enough to run through the vineyards.
We’d arrive in Positano by boat before dusk, just as the last golden light makes sparkles dance on the sea and kisses the colorful abodes climbing up the cliffside. We’d take a little dip in the water at Arienzo beach before dinner, bobbing in the warm, clear blue water, letting my cares wash away with the waves; possibilities as infinite as the sea.
Then we’d have a candlelit dinner with the view from Le Sireneuse, maybe spaghetti alle vongole or freshly caught fish. And then even though it would probably be brutta figura to have a pizza AND a primo piatto, I’d just have to have a pizza too because no day is perfect without a pizza. 😀 For dessert, I’d finish my perfect day with the most perfectly refreshing dessert, delizia al limone and finish with an amaro (a bitter liqueur for digestion) and whispers of sweet nothings against an inky starlit sky and this song playing in the background
If Alberto plans our perfect day…
Alberto would wake up in Venice at the elegant Hotel Cipriani with a giant international breakfast buffet full of eggs, toast with salted butter, sausage, pastries, and orange juice. And after all that he would have his Italian caffè and bombolone, a cream fille d donut (remember, our stomachs never get too full on this perfect day :d).
The we would take a passeggiata around the narrow, mysterious passageways until we come across a bacaro (Venetian eatery) for some cicchetti (Venetian appetizers) like sarde in saor (sardines in marinated onions) and baccalà mantecato (whipped cod). After that we’d take a boat to the nearby islands of Burano & Tellaro to stroll around some more and have a frittura mista (mixed fried seafood) followed by a prosecco at the legendary Locanda Cipriani that was frequented by Hemingway himself.
This post is part of #DolceVitaBloggers, a monthly link up for lovers of Italy, hosted by myself, Kristie of mammaprada.com and Jasmine of questadolcevita.com. If you would like to blog or vlog about your “perfect Italian day” (real or imagined) you may add your post here between April 7-14, 2018.