|| Autumn... Castelmagno of the Piedmont
Picture a wheel of Castelmagno set upon a rough-hewn wooden table, a cheese so valuable to be used as currency in the 1300s by shepherds coming down to the valley.
Alongside sits a decanter of vintage Barolo. It’s evening, the sun is setting on the Langhe and the fire crackles in the hearth, enveloping the room in warmth and the aroma of chestnuts. Cut yourself a hefty wedge of Castelmagno, one of Italy’s most prestigious cheeses, whose special flavor comes from the blue mold that grows within each form. Now take a sip of Barolo, and let your adventure into Italian wine and food begin. With Italia by Design, this, and much more, is what we are.
Winter... Rustic charm of Friuli
Meet Tony, your welcoming host, full of energy. He invites you, like an ancient pilgrim, to enter his rustic stone farmhouse, welcomed by his whole family. You are in front of a large circular hearth called fogolar, where you can hear the interesting history of the house and its owners, past and present.
The room of the fogolar is furnished with a peaceful semplicity: wooden tables and chairs woven from straw. Memories of old farm life adorn the walls. Tony’s wife, Paola, prepares the organic food grown on their property, with the ease of a great chef. After dinner you relax in front of the fire until it is mere embers, then make your way upstairs, listening to the gentle sound of your slippers on the wooden stairs worn smooth by the centuries.
The wood-burning stove has made your room toasty, and you crawl under the heavy covers and fall into a deep and restful sleep. When you wake, you can be sure that Tony has already been tending his land for hours. You will appreciate his efforts when you try the homemade jams, honey and bread at the breakfast table, along with the fresh apple juice. Spend the morning exploring nearby Cividale, along the banks of the Tagliamento, which bears witness to the past civilizations of the Longobards and the Romans. Contemplate life in a cosy enoteca with one of the excellent Friuli wines. This region called Friuli means culture, food, wine, and fun. Come discover it with Italia by Design.
Spring... Tastes of Sicily
When your meal in an Italian restaurant begins with a taste of extra virgin olive oil, this often comes from Sicily. Enter into the secret world of this liquid gold, and come with us to a bed and breakfast set in the heart of an olive grove, just outside of Trapani. Here the owner Maria Grazia will show you the whole process of how olive oil is made. You can then relax by the pool, dreaming of the menu that the resident chef is preparing.
Here in the heart of European civilization you can still feel the influence of the ancient Greeks, Romans and Phoenicians on this unique region. Wake up early to go to the sea or visit the fish market as the boats return to port. Experience the island’s real flavor with authentic cannoli, cassata cake or pistacchio gelato. Let Italia by Design show you the true tastes Sicily.
Summer... Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast
The oranges and lemons in the grove surrounding your bed and breakfast bask in the sun during the day, and at night can be heard gently dropping to the ground. You’ll find the fresh-squeezed juice from the oranges at breakfast, at your table on the terrace.
How easy it would be to while away the time here, gazing out over the Bay of Naples and Mount Vesuvius, but there is so much to see and do around Sorrento. A leisurely day exploring the Isle of Capri with its wonderful rocky landscape and famous Grotta Azzurra. A trip back in time to visit the wonders of ancient Pompei and Ercolano. A drive along the breathtaking Amalfi Coast, stopping for a stroll in Positano, perched above the cliffs.
A day in colorful Naples discovering the traditions and flavors of this unique city. What does Italia by Design have in store for you today? Put your daily itinerary in your bag, and you’re on your way.
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