Hello World!

October 10, 2011 § 4 Comments

“Life this way—- free, expansive, unexpected, breathtaking,                          is something not even my imagination suggested”


View the most recent chapter by moving your curser over the “The Foot of the Mountain” link to the left and then over “Ear, Nose & Throat.” If this is your first time, start with “Waking Up” Chapter 1 under “Milazzo” and work your way around.









Waking Up…

October 10, 2011 § Leave a comment

“Am I imagining this?”




“No amore mio, this is real”



“Life this way— free, expansive, unexpected, breathtaking, is something not even my imagination suggested”









Haggard from travel and lack of sleep, the traditional Milazzo breakfast of granita caffe con panna and brioche is the cure for the extra baggage under the eyes. “In a place this far south it makes total sense- it’s a frozen cappuccino!”









“It looks so simple. If someone saw a picture of this they would wonder, what’s the big deal? But each individual ingredient tastes like its American cousin on crack.” Salad of radicchio, fennel, tomato and capers with lemon and blood orange vinnaigrette, sliced mortadella, ricotta salata affumicata (smoked) with olive oil and grated orange peel, and local grillo wine.



Eric found a place to write…

…while Alessa figured out there is no “fluff cycle” in Sicily.












“Alessa! The sun is setting, I’m eating the best damn blood orange of my life,

and I can practically touch the sea with my fingertips.”









Vinitaly…22 regions, 575 producers from Piemonte alone, over 10,000 wines– “We thought we’d be half naked on the beach making art.”

“Now look at us, we’re in suits and they’re rolling out the rug.”








“Like cattle to the wine troughs”

“… uh, that would be Kobi cattle.”

Sebastiano, the wine maker for Sassicaia, sat with us and shared his wine. As did Michele Chiarlo at Michele Chiarlo, Roberto at Pighin, Dr. Matteo at Tenuta Sette Ponti, Francesco at Canalicchio di Sopra and the beautiful husband and wife team, Mariagrazia and Claudio, at Icardi. Thank you Sara for spending the day with us and showing us this unbelievable spectacle!



… at the temple of Jorge!



… and a focused Riesling tasting—






“Va cagare… parla troppo!”









What an Italian food court looks like…

…and like any good food court they have fried food.











“Look at that color, it’s bright and red the way it was meant to be, and it doesn’t taste like an assembly line.”



“My god, this flavor, I feel like I’m getting to know the pig personally.”







Lardo, bresaola Mantovese (a local style made with donkey), Mortadella, goat cheese from Lombardia, prosciutto San Danielle and a bottle of 3euro wine.














The man is back in his element —train station espresso, lardo and donkey bresaola panini for the road, and we’re off once again.



Nadine at Braida spent over an hour with us, sharing stories about their wines and her own life—grazie mille!








… and for the grand finale, what has become one of our three favorite producers in Italy

Tullia honored us with a private tasting upstairs.



She told us the Romito Romitorio story, we talked about art, and we tasted the entire line including Italy only wines and those not yet released.

A special thank you to Maurizio in NoVA, you introduced us to this wine and gave us the gift of this experience— sei un caro amico!







The train to the Verona airport—

“eh, Alessa?”


“You ever heard of Pasta Milazzo?”

“No. What’s in it?”

“Well, you gotta start with pasta.”

“No fuckin kidding”

… the rest we won’t tell.






Even in a dump like the port of Messina, where it’s hard to find a toilet seat and a person has to do it al vollo, up in the air like a rooster, you can still find a perfect espresso–“caffe e buono!”











A plane, a train, two taxis and a bus, finally we are home in Milazzo.






Pasta Milazzo—so good we just might build a restaurant around it, you’ll have to wait and see.














“The only good reason not to have more wine is that there is none left.”

…or you’re sleeping.






…watch for the next chapter when Eric and Alex take a tour of one man’s passion– “the city of carefree children”