As I sit down to write on my blog about our visit to Florence, I’m trying hard not to make it sound like a Wikipedia article. As a history geek, I love the facts, dates and events that make up the timeline of a city. But much like IQ and blood pressure scores do not define who we are as people, dates and facts can’t adequately describe a city, particularly this one. I struggle to write “from the heart”, but I’ll make the attempt. Here goes.
Our driver picked us up from our Milan hotel for the 2 hour drive to the town of Bellagio. Once we got out of Milan, the drive itself was scenic, with the Italian Alps ahead of us, passing small villages and rural farmland. Once we got to Lake Como, we drove down a narrow winding road next to the lake itself. As always in Italy, the road was busy with cars, trucks, scooters and cyclists, but unfazed by all the congestion, our Italian driver navigated the chaotic, aggressive Italian driving that always seems to work itself out with no accidents or mishaps.
[Read more…] about Bellagio, Italy and Lake Como
“Milan, darling. Milan.” — Edna Mode – “The Incredibles”
Our first stop on our recent Italy trip was the city of Milan. Renowned for its sense of fashion, there is a lot to see and explore, even for a “jeans-and-sweatshirt” guy like me. Since our time was limited, we hired a local tour guide to give us a personal tour around the city.
While most large cities in the world have the best cathedrals and museums, my favorite places to visit are the smaller towns and villages in a country. I enjoy the slower pace and less crowds, but I also love to see a place with ties to older customs. It is like stepping back in time, and since I’m a history geek, it resonates far more than a famous sculpture or painting. San Gimignano is exactly the type of place I love to explore.
We are going back to Italy for our next wine.
I’m not a big white wine drinker. I tend to prefer heavier, more robust red wines. White wines are usually either too fruity or too sweet for my palate. In addition, there are more health benefits in red wines, so I figure if I’m going to consume the calories, I might as well get the positive effects that go along with a red wine.
In preparation for our next “big” trip, I am again tasting the wines of Italy.
Barbaresco is one of the great wines of Piemonte, a region located in Northwest Italy. Barbaresco is made from the Nebbiolo grape, which has been grown in the Piemonte as far back as the 13th century. Nebbiolo is a late maturing grape, and is tempermental, very sensitive to different soils and climates. The grapes in this wine are grown at an elevation of 600 to 1300 feet above sea level.