Category Archives: Food Travels

Positano’s Casa Cosenza

We’ve stayed in just about every room at the Casa Cosenza over the past thirty-plus years, each one with a breathtaking view of the spectacular Positano. Maurizio first brought me here when we were still fidanzati; I was here on vacation and spoke no Italian at the time. The whole weekend I was intoxicated: head…

Maryland crab cakes at Timbuktu

Maryland crab cakes at Timbuktu

I took Maurizio and Annie to buy take-out crab cakes at this unlikely crab cake venue on Dorsey Road in Hanover, Maryland: an out of the way, side of the highway restaurant and take-out joint. A place, if I were hungry and looking for a place to eat, I would not drive into. The name…

Handcrafted Wine Bottle Stoppers

Hand carved bottle stoppers

Outside of San Francisco’s ferry building I often find more artisanal creations of interest than within. Yesterday, my only day in town on this visit, I ran across some beautiful woodworked items ranging from vases to bowls to cutting boards to wine bottle stoppers. I enjoy taking a bottle of wine to a dinner at…

Everything old becomes new…

Recycled bicycle

An old rusty bicycle becomes a perfect prop for baskets of flowers. I saw this at a restaurant in Ponte Milvio, in north Rome and was charmed by it. Often what is old and rusty and no longer of utilitarian value takes on a new function of beauty. Old wheelbarrows, old shutters and doors, and…

Calvi, Umbria – the Festa di San Pancrazio

Calvi Festa di San Pancrazio

Calvi in Umbria lies just barely north of the Lazio region, along the Via Flaminia. If you happen by the area it’s well worth making a stop to take a look at this medieval borgo. From the hill town you can look down upon the rolling Umbrian countryside, as pictured above. The town’s major festival,…

Saturday outdoor market in Sperlonga

Saturday outdoor market in Sperlonga

Saturday morning is the big outdoor market day in Sperlonga. One of my favorite vendors has an assortment of olives cured by his family owned azienda agricola, including local Gaeta olives. He also prepares whole red peppers in an agrodolce bath. Most of the peppers go by the wayside as the process is lengthy and…

Coregone in Bianco, the prize-winning lake fish recipe of the year in Bolsena

Last weekend we were at Lake Bolsena, an under two hours drive from us. We were there with friends: it was partially a reunion of sorts (some coming from France) and others who vacation at the lake regularly; sailing, canoeing, swimming. One of our friends is a professional musician and keeps a grand piano at…

Marinated anchovies with spacca sassi, Portonovo, Monte Conero, Le Marche

We spend time in Portonovo every year, usually for brief scappatelle of a few days. Some of our closest friends live there and an additional benefit is the spectacular beauty of the area: the lush mountains of the Monte Conero spill dramatically into the Adriatic Sea. The beach is covered with white stones and rocks…

Pizzaiolo Restaurant, Oakland CA: best of the Bay

Last week’s International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) annual conference started off with optional Saturday tours; always one of the best parts of the annual conference. It gives you the chance to explore a part of the host city’s food culture in depth, this year San Francisco’s. I lead the “Alice Waters Edible Schoolyard &…

Ristorante Il Grecale, Anzio (Southern Lazio)

I’d been to Il Grecale with friends in the past and also taken a stroll around the charming port area of this small seaside town in southern Lazio. That was in the summer and today was quite a different atmosphere. It was a blustery February day and we chose Anzio as we were searching for…