The daily diary of a wandering restaurateur In Italy
July 24 - Citta della Pieve

It was a bit overcast and windy, so we decided it was not a good day to go to Lake Trasimeno. Instead, we spent the day exploring Citta della Pieve, the little town we "live in." It is a delightfully unspoiled place with virtually no modern buildings (certainly none inside the city walls.) We discovered that the Lake Trasimeno Blues Festival starts tomorrow with a concert in Citta on Tuesday and Wednesday evening before heading to some of the other lake towns. We will be in Florence tomorrow night, but some good blues outdoors on a warm Italian night sounds just about perfect for Wednesday!

We found out that Citta is home to the narrowest street in Italy -- so narrow, they say that two people could lean out of windows on either side and kiss. We found it . . . and I don't think you could even manage to get the windows opened in the first place! At one end, the street is barely shoulder width but opens up to nearly two feet at the other end! Eric and Karen decided to check out the kissing part (without the windows) and it works.

As we were wandering around town, the owner of the restaurant we visited on our first night called to us and invited us in for espresso. They were hours away from opening, but it was a pleasant surprise (and undoubtedly assured that we would return at least once more before leaving town!) Once again, personal connection is the key.

We have adopted Cantina del Saltapicchio, the local wine bar, as a home away from home. The operating partner, Cinzia, is a delight and despite the fact that she speaks no English, we manage to pass an amazing amount of information back and forth. Her selection of local wines is impressive. They also offer espresso, cheese, light snacks, desserts . . . and a bottle of Jack Daniels that seems quite out of place!

We passed the afternoon wandering, shopping (at least Margene and Karen attacked the local linen shops with a vengeance while Eric and I sat at a table on the piazza sipping wine and watching the flow of life in a small Italian town.) I think we all got what we wanted out of the day.

Dinner was another object lesson, although more on the negative side than anything. We went to a local restaurant where the food was reasonably good (and extremely inexpensive) but where the manager/owner could have cared less that we were there (and there was only one other table occupied at any time during our visit.) He stayed out of the dining room as much as possible and, when there, avoided any sort of eye contact with our table. (We weren't behaving THAT poorly!) Finally, we had to search him out for a check so we could escape (to the cantina for espresso and dessert.) We all agreed that we would never return, despite the "bargain" nature of the place (good, cheap food).

Our new friends on the local restaurant scene

Citta della Pieve

[Italy Itinerary Page][Top] [Email Restaurant Doctor]

© 2000 Restaurant Doctor