We Don’t Eat Here

One of the many reasons to travel to Venice with us is finding the “real Venice” away from the tourist traps where the authentic Venetian cuisine is found.  A side perk:  none of our customers has ever been put in the hospital by a waiter.

For the record, violence of ALL kinds in Venice is exceedingly rare and this event probably qualifies as a lightning strike type incident, but needless to say knowing where to not eat is as important as anything you’ll decide on your trip to Italy.  Don’t waste time on bad food and tourist traps!   And not to victim blame, but you don’t go to Venice for the steak any more than you go to Lubbock, TX for the sushi.

On The Wine Trails Of Italy: Monte Tondo

Sassi Italy Tours is really versed in guiding folks through “must see” Italy–the cultural heritage and art history treasures of Rome, Florence, Venice, Pisa, Pompeii, etc, thanks to Doug Sassi’s encyclopedic knowledge of the Renaissance and Italy itself–but now we’re expanding our repertoire.  We’ve made contacts (friends we haven’t met, really) in Italy in places we think best represent its aesthetic and culinary palates and its unbeatable viticultural pursuits (a fancy way of saying where great wine is made!).    This fall we’re going to explore a few of these places in depth and “interview” them to make sure our take on them as places you the traveler *need* to see is accurate; watch this space as we add the food and wine trails of Italy (well off the usual tourist track, no doubt!) to our list of places we know in depth and can recommend whole-heartedly to the discerning traveler who wants an artisanal Italy experience close to the land, the people, the things that make its countryside like no other in the world.

One of the places we’re going:


One of the fun parts of writing about Italy, Italian wine, Italian food, Italian people, and going over there regularly is that sensation that you’re never quite seeing it all.  There’s so much to see just beyond the typical tourist track!

Our focus is seeing places we haven’t seen before and forging new friendships; one of the ones we’ve struck up recently is a winery in Soave that we’re going to spend some time investigating and reviewing and documenting for you; you’ll see here posts soon reporting back from new spots on the Italian wine and food trail that you need to know about.  We like to know where we’re recommending clients to visit!  Looking at other places to visit in the Garganega capital of the world I saw this lovely video on YouTube, and thought you might enjoy.


Fun With Wine and Google, Moronna Edition

Had the pleasure of trying I Sodi del Paretaio thanks to our friends at Sovereignty Wines, and we weren’t disappointed in the slightest.   What a fantastic example of the Chianti DOCG.


After trying that we certainly wanted to know where our wine came from, and so off to Google Maps it was.   I Sodi comes from the Pisa province and a little town called Terricciola, from a winery on the appropriately named Via del Chianti no less.

 Badia 1

You’ll find it a little more than halfway to Pisa from Siena.   What a lovely part of the world.

Badia 2

I love the names of the towns here.  They roll off the tongue quite lyrically.   You’re in the heart of Chianti country.

Badia 3

You can see quite clearly at this elevation that the land has been extensively re-purposed for agricultural purposes but is still green, rolling hills.

Badia 4

And as we descend, we see the winery amidst cypress trees and vineyards in the Tuscan countryside.  Fantastic!  And if you follow the little dirt road out of town toward the signs for Badia di Moronna, you see this:

Badia 5

If you’re like us, you dream about getting to visit places like this you haven’t been before.  Time to add this one to the list.