Here we go again ...

Well, four years have passed since we last traveled to Europe, so another visit is long overdue. This time we will be exploring Italy’s Northwest region in search of gastronomic bliss, washed down with fruits of the vine. We will fly into Milano, rent a car and motor through the foothills of the Piedmont. Our first stop will be Bricco San Giovanni B&B in Isola D’Asti. We’ll make this agriturismo our home for a week while we make daily excursions in search of the region’s “Holy Grail” in a glass.

Then, it is off to the Italian Alps above Torino where we’ll stay at Bella Baita, another B&B. There we will take in the sights of the spectacular mountains and take two cooking classes in hopes of bringing home a few culinary tricks. While we pride ourselves in making pretty good pasta, we have hopes of expanding our chef’s skills and sharing them with friends.

Then, it ison to Serralunga where we will stay at the Meriame Farmhouse in the middle of the Paolo Manzone Vinyards. Once again, we intend to sip our way through the countryside which is known for its world famous wines made from the ubiquitous Nebbiolo grape. If Barolo is the first that comes to mind….we are not surprised.

After three weeks in Italy, we drop the car in Torino, board a train and snake our way through the Alps to Avignon, France, where we will rendezvous with our San Francisco friends, Bill and Marsha Adler and board a Viking River Cruise. Together, we will meander up the Rhone River for a week taking in the verdant landscapes of Provence and Burgundy.

From Chalone sur Saone where we disembark, we will spend two days in Lyon, the “gastronomical capital” of France and then travel by train back to Milano.

Aside from the inevitable commentary of the expected sumptuous cuisine and the accompanying palate stimulating wines we intend to enjoy, we hope to share a bit of history and cultural insight that we gather on our excursions. In advance, we thank you for vicarously joining us on this trip and again, remind you that any and all comments about our adventures are most welcome.

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