Another great contact in Italy is Cherrye Moore at My Bella Vita http://mybellavita.com/ I ‘met’ Cherrye on line while researching expats in Italy.
She is a contact I have wanted to share with you for months and Cherrye’s current post gives me the perfect opportunity.
Cherrye has a wonderful story on her life in Italia, her BnB, family ancestry searches and table tours….. http://bit.ly/18p0FviA GREAT way to experience Italy…….not as a tourist but as a traveler, consider My Bella Vita Calabrian Table Tour tour !
8-Day Tour of the Pollino Mountains and TropeaDay 1
Folk Music Feast
You will arrive at Lamezia Terme International Airport this morning and be met by us, Cherrye Moore and Tania Pascuzzi, your bilingual hosts, who will join you throughout The Calabrian Table Tour. We will transfer via private car service to northern Calabria. There we will check into our mountain retreat. In the early evening we will transfer to a nearby farm where we will meet Nicola, a retired engineer who has dedicated his life to preserving the history of the Pollino. We will join his wife, Caterina, and enjoy our first cooking class in the Pollino Mountains where we will learn to make homemade pasta and famous Calabriansalsiccia. We will end Day One with a private feast, complete with live Calabrian folk musicians from Morano Calabro. Day 2
Zotërote flini arbërisht? Calabria’s Albanian Influences
We will have breakfast, then set out to explore the heart and soul of Pollino’s Albanian culture. We will visit a local village, where the Albanian heritage still thrives and have the chance to see the famous Ragnanello Gorge, the deepest gorge in Europe. For lunch, we will feast on Albanian dishes that feature the sweet paprika that is commonly used in these villages. In the late afternoon we will take a guided walk through Morano Calabro-one of Italy’s 100 most beautiful villages-and step back in time to explore village’s castle and winding historical center. Day 3
Hike and Harvest
We will spend the morning on a mild walking excursion through the Pollino Mountains. During our hike, we will encounter the rare and beautiful Lorica pine, a tree that is found only in this part of the world. We will step back in time and stop for a picnic lunch a sacco, complete with local bread, frittata, salamis, local cheeses and wine, all set with a backdrop of pine trees and mountain views. In the afternoon we will visit a local cheese factory. For dinner, our host, Adriana, will prepare the meal that won her first place in a national culinary competition. Day 4
Pollino, Polenta and Preserves
We will enjoy a breakfast before pushing up our sleeves and starting our full-day, hands-on cooking class with Adriana. This nationally-known cook will teach us to make frascola, a traditional polenta dish only found in the Pollino Mountains. She will teach us how Calabrians prepare fruits and vegetables and we will watch her transform them into jams, conserves and sott’oliojarred specialties. We will enjoy the rest of this festive day by eating our creations al fresco with Adriana and her family. Day 5
Chic Calabrian Cuisine
After breakfast, we will say goodbye to our friends in the Pollino Mountains and head to the aquamarine waters of Calabria’s west coast. On our way, we will stop in the coastal village of Pizzo Calabro. We’ll have the chance to stretch our legs with a guided walking tour of this 14th Century fisherman’s village and visit the 17th Century Chiesa di Piedigrotta tufa cave. We will dine on an exclusive seafood lunch at one of Calabria’s most exclusive restaurants. We will continue on to Tropea where we will settle into our bed and breakfast, located in an ancient palazzo in the historical center of this 16th Century medieval village. In the evening, we will meet at our favorite pizzeria in Tropea, where the pizzas are cooked in an antique wood brick-fired oven. Day 6
Rustic Farm Cooking in Caria
After breakfast, we will travel into the green hills of Caria to join our friend Leo at his farm that is surrounded by vineyards and olive groves for a day of rustic cooking. There we will meet two local signoras who will teach us how to make pane di casa, a type of homemade bread, pignata, slow-cooked butter beans famous in this area and fileja, the signature pasta of the province of Vibo Valentia. We will enjoy the Calabrian feast our group prepared, then walk off our big lunch with a visit to the family’s farm. Day 7
Preparing Pesce with Pasquale
After breakfast we will enjoy a guided tour of Tropea. We will stop for a light lunch at one of our favorite trattorias, a modest, family-run restaurant where we will enjoy an array of their homemade antipasti, grilled organic meats and seasonal vegetables. After lunch we will travel to Santa Domenica where we will spend an unforgettable afternoon cooking fresh seafood dishes in the private home of chef Pasquale. A local signora will join us and make fried-dough fritters cooked in the ancient cast-iron pot tradition, for us to enjoy while we cook and prepare a fabulous Calabrese seafood meal from the day’s catch. We’ll enjoy our farewell dinner with Pasquale on his terrace overlooking the turquoise waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea. Day 8
After breakfast we will transfer to the Lamezia Terme International Airport and you will say Nivedemo Calabria. * This is a brief synopsis of the Calabrian Table Tour. A more detailed itinerary, including hotel information will be sent to tour members in their final packet. Some excursions are season-specific and might not be available year-round.
Contact My Bella Vita directly for information and questions