Friday, July 28, 2017

Roman Food: One Bite at a Time

I was introduced to The Roman Guy prior to my spring trip Home to Italy.   This Roman based company offers group or private travel experiences in major Italian cities as well as day trips.  For the week I was in Rome tour choices included early morning Vatican visits, art tours, gallery tours, walking and bike tours and many more.  Too many to fit into a week long visit!

Since I am a solo traveler the opportunity to enjoy local Italian food in locations I would not find on my own, was perfect.  I arranged to join the evening food tour "Trastevere Locals Food Tour in Rome". 

Michaele Henry would be leading our group tonight and he warmly welcomed each participant and introduced himself.

piazza Farnese 
The tour began at the piazza Farnese Michaele shared the history of the areas we were visiting and many antidotes that made our tour far more engaging.

Our first stop was a short distance away to sample a wide selection of cheeses.  The interior of this shop reminded me of an Italian deli in the Italian neighborhoods in New Jersey.

There were several trays of cheese samples prepared and Michaele  explained how each cheese was made and how they differed from each other.   This was a learning experience as well as a great start to our evening. 

Our appetites wet we moved on to Campo di' Fiore and had a quick history lesson about Giordano Bruno (statue in the center of the campo).   Bruno was a philosopher who died at the stake for heresy.
Campo di Fiore is a favorite place for locals as well as tourists.

 Next stop to try baccala.

Baccala was described as a "favorite Roman street food snack".   I only think of this fish in the dried form so it was a surprise to find  how moist the fried morsels were.    The batter is made with sparkling water and renders coating that is light. 

One woman cooks all the fish in a large fry pan

Our group finished all the platters of baccala

From Campo di Fiore we walked over the Ponte Sisto (bridge) to Trastevere to have some of the best pizza this Italian American has ever tried.  Pizza al taglio:  pizza by the slice.

The hot slice of pizza was crisp and very flavorful  


Farm to Table: 

Our next stop is for antipasto in a Kilometer zero restaurant.    "The Roma Guy explains that whatever is served in a KmO shop or restaurant is produced in the local region or surrounding area.  The product has traveled almost zero kilometers to your plate".

Our group almost filled this entire artisan restaurant.   Large platters of meats and cheeses were set in front of us to taste and cold white wine (for some of us) to sip while we tasted.   Not a fan of cured meats,  I passed on those and enjoyed the wonderful toppings on the fresh breads.   Wine, bread, cheese............

It was growing dark as we walked to our next restaurant.  The lights from the buildings surrounding the small square where we sat outside made a festive mood.  After a few glasses of wine our group became more chatty.   And I believe we were all becoming happily full.

                                                         And we ate some MORE!

OK this was so GOOD I forgot to photograph it!

In addition to the great food and new restaurants this was a great learning experience about how the dishes were prepared, sometimes the history of a dish or the ingredients and preparation.   Michaele has an endless knowledge of Rome, it's neighborhoods and food.

                                                         White and Red pasta.
                 Hard to say which was better and YES I finished my plate as I was taught to do.
                 Fresh pasta is a  unique taste and texture and the fresh sauce and grated chees was     
                                                   filled with a wonderful aroma
The best saved for Last    Gelato
With many falvors to choose from everyone selected two.

An evening tour is the perfect time to see Rome with almost no tourists, avoid the heat of the day and join the locals in their evening passeggita. 

On your next trip to Italy enjoy an experience not just a tour. 
See all the opportunities at The Roman Guy www. and enjoy!

I want to thank The Roman Guy for such a wonderful evening and I will join another food tour with them on my next trip  Home to Italy.   All opinions and photos in this post are my own. 

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Sorrento Italy
If you will be traveling in Italy this fall, think about a short break to learn Italian in a magical city by the sea!

Contact Olga Stinga for details

Special Offer: learn Italian in Sorrento!
Cari Amici,
if you attend an Italian course in September, October, November
or December 2017, we offer you a special discount:
-1 week Italian BASIC course (20 hrs group course)
-enrollment fee
- 1 week (6 nights) accommodation in our Residence Hall, Single or Double rooms with
 sea-view (sea view rooms feature a window) or garden-view (some garden-view rooms
 feature a balcony) and a common kitchen area (self-catering). Please see photos and
Special Price: €590*
                                         * (1 week: € 590 instead 690€) - (2 weeks: € 1100 instead 1380€)
Courses Start Every Monday.  
For enrollment, information and details, please contact Olga Stinga at 
Vi Aspetto, 
Sant'Anna Institute is proud to be a member of:
NAFSA Association of International Educators, the Forumon Education Abroad, Golden Key International Honour Society, Eduitalia international Education, the ASILS Association of schools of Italian as a second Language,
and many more (check
Sant'Anna Institute | Via Marina Grande, 16 | 80067 - Sorrento (NA) Italy | 
Tel: +39 081.807.55.99 - Fax: +39 081.878.44.70 | Email:
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Sant'Anna Institute-Sorrento Lingue, Via Marina Grande 16, Sorrento -Italy, Italy 80067 Italy
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I have attended a program with Sant'Anna Institute while on sabbatical in Sorrento.  After many attempts to learn Italian, the patience and encouragement the instructors shared made a big difference.