Save Room for Sorrento!

When you visit Montalcino, you’ll quickly learn that Brunello is king. And, all that fantastic Brunello pairs perfectly with the Tuscan cuisine—roasted meats, whole fish and those delectable pastas.

Zucchini Parmesan Salad

Over the course of our trip, we noticed a trend – shaved zucchini was quite the buzz, making frequent appearances on the seasonal menus.

One of the delightful versions was a medley of shrimp, cantaloupe and curled slivers of zucchini, all lightly tossed in a sweet, lemon yogurt dressing.

Zucchini Shrimp Salad

The razor thin zucchini made an appearance in a couple of our other dining stops around Tuscany. So simple but so good! The basics to the dishes included raw zucchini slices (probably done with a mandolin) sometimes tossed with arugula, plenty of shaved parmesan cheese, olive oil and fresh cracked black pepper—delish!

Zucchini Parmesan Salad

After Tuscany, we headed to the Amalfi Coast for a few days of ocean time. The best meal of our entire trip was there– highlights – a spectacular lunch at Francischiello Ristorante, a charming spot on the dramatic coastline near Sorrento.

Steamed Baby Squid in Fig Leaves

All of the food was incredible, but I’ll never forget the beautiful baby squids cooked to perfection, delicately seasoned with lemon zest, topped with delicate bread crumbs and wrapped in fig leaves—truly exquisite in every way!

A delightful house made pasta with chunks of tender lobster and fresh tomatoes was next, followed by yet another course–a perfectly poached giant lobster tail! Bellisimo.

Sorrento Lobster Pasta

A huge thank you to Houston’s Tony Vallone for the recommendation! If you’re in the mood for shopping in Sorrento, Tony’s long time friend there, Pepe, owns a fantastic store called The Lucky Store. The large space features beautiful Italian glasswork, pottery, art and jewelry.

Our final night before heading to the airport was spent in Rome where we discovered a private rooftop bar at the Hassler Hotel – surely that sweeping skyline with its Seven Hills is one of the most majestic views in Europe. We certainly raised a glass to its grandeur that night!


<–Part 2


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