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The Little Travel Brochure of Cinque Terre.

The Little Travel Brochure of Cinque Terre.IMG_4744

The little travel brochure of Cinque Terre indicates that in this enchanting scenery, nature & the art of gastronomy have merged to create dishes that are packed with flavour, rich yet refined, while at the same time being simple & genuine. We are discovering this traditional cuisine for ourselves, enjoying the countless specialities from the sea, the land & the culture that has been handed down from one generation to the next.

Mumma Mia! The food never stops, which is a most delicious practice we have decided, (& we will worry about the consequences on our return home :)) Thank goodness for all those steps…

Our new home is in the old town of Monterosso, amid the casual hustle & bustle of cobble-stoned commerce. The smells of fresh warm baking continuously waft in from the kitchen next door, luring us with ethereal charm. We must resist.  We must save ourselves for tonight’s recommended feast.

Dinner is at a well-known local seafood restaurant, with the Mediterranean Sea lapping effortlessly beside us. The picturesque railway station runs directly over the top, which contributes to a weird feeling, & a loud part of our surroundings. But amazingly, the noise soon becomes part of the flavour of the whole evening. And fortunately for our group, we arrived on the day of an important saint celebration & religious holiday. The villages grouped together for playful warring games, much healthy merriment & the tussle of local teams, which meant we were pleasantly entertained, & welcomed.

Riomaggiore gave us the most awesome so, so fresh swordfish steak, moist & succulent, almost vanilla-ish in texture. In sharp contrast we were offered a flavour packed drizzle of excellent olive oil, rich juicy tomatoes, baby capers & garlic with a crisp green salad to accompany.  A most delicious & memorable meal.

Equally magnificent was our next dinner back in Montorosso, of fresh crab & hand-made gnocchi, while the pear & white wine, cream cheese reduction over tortellini was to die for. We skipped the many delightful desserts in exchange for a good long stroll around town in search of the best hot chocolate nightcap….& we found it! The little café produced loads of photographic evidence of the devastating floods of October 2011, & as well as many friendly folk & fascinating stories of getting on with the celebration of life…:))

Vernazza, my favourite, beautiful & warm, hot on the day we visited. And so it was a stack of ice cold beers, wonderful tasty Panini’s, the famous regional walnut torte, & the ever present olive oil & Balsamic vinegar with crusty bread.

In Manarola it was spinach & ricotta ravioli, again hand-made by mumma, with love, in a deliciously delicate walnut sauce sprinkled with loads of parmesan. We washed it down with a smooth light red specific to the area before rushing off to catch the ferry back home.

Corniglia became just an afternoon trip.  The girls drew & painted, while some of us found a wee bar in a hole in the wall :)) To sample the local produce you understand… And then it was magnificent gelato all round, the sumptuous & creative displays mesmerizing us on every second corner… A handsome young man, studying to be a doctor, travelling on his own, stumbled into our group, so what were we to do? Off we went to the local bar while we waited for the bus, & of course, tried a few of the local mojito’s as well as the sweet wine & biscotti :))

Our other meals were plentiful platters of crusty breads, many & varied moist cured meats, olives, cheeses & tiny tasty tomatoes, all fondly produced from a sparkle in some mind somewhere & delivered with molto gusto… Oh yeah, & 4 (yes that’s right! Four!) course meals at our motel on the nights we decided to get an early one (as if that bit ever happened :)) We mustn’t forget the limencello!

As we sadly leave the exquisite Cinque Terre, with heavy hearts & rounded tummies, a promise on our lips to return as soon as possible, the excitement dangles in the fog just round the corner, just out of sight, of our next adventure…destination Tuscany!!!

 

12 Comments
  1. How absolutely wonderful Ronnie, I love Italy, the food , the language, the food. ….. Have fun xxx

    • lol Anita-Clare…did I mention the food? :)) thanks for appreciating it all & coming along for the ride xx

  2. Your words bring back memories of only a week ago, yet it feels like a year! Thank you for the reminder Roni. The love that goes into food and cooking in Italy is astounding isn’t it? You can taste the dedication and the timelessness of the place… now I’m home and trying to reduce the bulging belly, I’ve woken up at 1.00am feeling hungry and yearning for one more bite of pesto pizza and another sip of lemon cello… ah, belissimo!

    • Thanks lovely…I’m so glad I’ve got a few words for triggering beautiful memories down the track too! They do disappear so quickly without some tweaking don’t they…

  3. I so love the Cinque Terre and you have brought back many fond memories of my time in Italy.
    Funny that I just did a blog post on my recipe for Tuscan Ribollita soup – so I was reminiscing about Italy too! enjoy!

    • Isn’t it such a special place Karen? And very cool that a fellow foodie can appreciate the memories :)) Happy to be of service…:)) cheers Roni xx

  4. Roni,

    Val thought I would enjoy your site. I have been travelling with you girls (via Facebook)through Cinque Terra (have never been, but would love to one day) and Tuscany which I loved when we were there in ’07. We stayed in Montecatini for a couple of days. Loved Siena…the Campo de Piazza where the Palio was held…what an experience. And the food you’ve experienced…what a degustation exercise. Love your colourful and descriptive monologue and photos.

    Peter

    • Oh thank you Peter. You must get to Cinque Terre whenever you can, it is stunning, & rich in so many ways.Val tells me you will love it…who wouldn’t? :)) Great to have you on board with our travels, cheers Roni xx

  5. Seriously you need to write a book ….

    • :)) :)) thanks again Paul….I’m so happy that you take the time to read & comment, but especially that you can appreciate the experience & remember your own from these triggers :)) Enjoy!! cheers Roni xx

  6. Love the sound and look of the food – just makes me want to escape to Italy now! Thanks for sharing!

    • Yes Cindy…let’s run away to Italy really soon :)) Let’s just do it! Until then, thanks for enjoying the journey with us, cheers Roni xx

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