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Picking Olives

One of the true joys of our Taste of Orvieto trip is the day we pick olives. Picking olives is quintessentially Italian. Most people have their own collection of trees from which they believe the world’s best oil is found. So to spend a day where we pick, press, and leave with our very own oil is so Italian. And of course our oil is the world’s best!

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Here is our group, olive trees behind us, nets spread out ready to catch our harvest.

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We use small rakes to pull olives off the branches which fall onto the nets from which we gather them up to be taken to the press.

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Beautiful to see the fruit of our labor heading to be cleaned and then sent to be pressed.

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We had to get in line behind this gentleman who brought his olives to the mill for pressing. He watched over every last detail carefully.

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This is his Ape with containers for his oil.

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We have lunch at the mill – Bartolomei. There is nothing quite like fresh oil on bread toasted over open coals.

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Rita about to put the oil on our bread.

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It’s always a fabulous, filling lunch at Bartolomei!

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Our oil begins to flow.

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We help fill our cans.

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A beautiful, tasty memento to take home and enjoy over the winter!

Beautiful Video

Kate Thompson is going to be leading a workshop for us September 25 – October 1, 2016. She will be guiding students in fresco like painting on canvas and wood. I hope I am able to embed her absolutely gorgeous video of what students will be doing below. If not you can look at it here https://vimeo.com/151424008

This will be one of many incredible classes. We have lots of other great trips both spring and fall. Take a look at our Trips page!

http://www.adventuresinitaly.net/trips.html

 

A Change of Venue

We are in Waco, Texas visiting our son. I’ve been to quite a few Texas cities, but this is my first visit to Waco. It is home to Baylor University, the Brazos River and a wonderful sculpture set commemorating its history at a point along the 4 mile river walk. Have a look.

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The Brazos is a big river

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It really is s compelling set of sculptures – the longhorn steers of Texas!

A day out from Orvieto

We spent a delightful, if cold, day visiting a few places with Cristina. We had a pretty drive to Civita.

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View from Civita

Cristina showed us an old escape route under the city. This view let us appreciate how narrow the city really is.

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We’re on one side and you can see the other through the tunnel.

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Soup was perfect for the day

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Bolsena fort

Next was Bolsena where the miracle leading to the building of the Duomo in Orvieto took place. The basilica San Cristina, below, is where the miracle happened.

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The church is actually three, each built at a different time.

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Inside San Cristina

After, we walked down to lake Bolsena for a coffee.

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Thank you Cristina for a beautiful day!!

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Wow! We had a wonderful new experience yesterday. It was a first for us and for Maurizio and Roberta who, for the first time, hosted a beer tasting/food pairing at their artisanal brewery Cento Litri.

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Maurizio introduced us to, and took us through, his beer making process.

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He ferments the must at different temperatures depending on the style of beer. In some, the yeast settles to the bottom and he removes it before drawing the must off. His beer is unfiltered, and develops the carbonation once in the bottle as it continues to ferment.

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His laboratory is spotless and gleaming.

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The house which sits above the brewery was hand made by Maurizio and his father-in-law. It took 7 years to complete, and is gorgeous. They just finished enclosing this porch, which is where we had our tasting/dinner.

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Maurizio prepares the beer. The sun continued to drop and the light fade.

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Antipasti with one kind of beer – a biondo. Roberta made the bread, and jam, and friends made the cheese and lardo. The rest of dinner was her wonderful creation.

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Gnocchi with mushrooms, and an American pale ale.

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The sun set, the moon followed, our happy selves reflected in the glass.

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Cinghiale, some of the best we’ve ever had, and look at that potato. Mama mia!

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Dessert beer?  Yes, my goodness, yes! It complemented the apple and fig tart so incredibly well.

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There we are enjoying the end of a delightful evening.

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The end. Thank you Maurizio, Roberta and Graziella!! What an incredible time you gave us.

Market Day

We went to the market to shop with Lorenzo prior to returning to his restaurant to cook.

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We got a kilo of these grown on the roots of a chestnut tree

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Weighing or fennel

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Never seen this guy selling at the market before

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Light reflecting off Palazzo Popolo windows

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I didn't get the stripe memo

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Zuppa!

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