Bella Italia! Nico and I visited Nico's father Marco in
Milano. As you can see from the map, we didn't exactly confine
ourselves to Milano.
The first outing was a trip to the restaurant
Camulin in the tiny town of Cossano Belbo near Alba in the
Piemonte region to have truffles. What a feast! Seven
courses and three bottles of wine later (and this was only lunch!)
we emerged wholly satisfied. This set the pace of culinary
indulgence for the rest of the trip. On the way home, we took
a tour through the Barolo wine region. The wine we had with
desert, Moscato d'Asti from
was delightful: sweet, effervescent, and only about 5.5% alcohol.
We visited the winery on the way home and bought some to take home.
The next day we headed east from Milano, stopping
in Cremona (home of Stradivarius), Sabbioneta, Mantova, and finally
Padova to visit Nico's aunt & uncle & cousins, where we ate like
kings (only better). While in Padova, we indulged in the
traditional spritz and proseco.
Then it was off to Venice to visit friends of
Nico and Marco who live there. We had lunch at an excellent
seafood restaurant and visited a famous cathedral.
Another memorable dining experience was dinner at
Boccon di Vino in Milano.
It was another great meal involving six or seven courses and 5
bottles of wine, each selected by the sommelier to best complement
that course, plus grappa. It's a good thing it was walking
distance from home!
The following day was a bit more relaxed.
We zipped over the border to Switzerland for lunch and a nice walk
around Lugano. The Alps and the alpine lakes were gorgeous.
And finally, what visit to northern Italy is
complete without a trip to Portofino. We wandered around
Portofino a bit, where apparently an episode of "Bold and the
Beautiful" was being filmed. Had a great lunch of foccacia di
Recco in Recco and also visited Camogli for a nice walk.