One advantage an overnight stay is that one can walk a town before the tourists arrive in the morning. I walked to the west from our hotel, looped north along the rim of the city, and then criss crossed Via Cavour along the narrow streets and back ways of Orvieto. The first photo in this set, Two Roads Diverge, will be at the start of our VF walk. I took the path to the right this morning; tomorrow the left and out of Orvieto to Rome. So, this one traveler will have done both.
When I returned to the hotel. I could not resist photographing the hotel cat named Coos. Very friendly and we had a love session.
The morning turned into the afternoon. It was time to meet Monique who was arriving from Florence. Her train was almost on time. I played guide showing the way to the funicular, the bus to the Duomo, and finally the walk to the hotel.
After a brief rest, we went on tour. Our first stop was La Musa, named after the owners and coincidentally one of our girl cats. The shop has a gelato flavor of elderberries with chocolate chips named Musa. That was my choice. This shop had flavors beyond the usual. It reminded me of Nuts About Ice Cream on Linden Street and its saffron flavor. Musa will do for this trip.
Monique’s internal clock was ticking to an Italian rhythm. 4:30 — aperitivo time. We stopped at a bar on Via Cavour. We toasted the start of our trip to Rome. Laird — note the beer?
Because La Palombo where Rich and I dined last Friday is literally a stone’s throw away from our hotel, we ducked in to make a reservation. A good practice in securing a table at this place. We were the first diners at 7:30. We each had a pasta. Monique chose the umbricelli with porcini; I went with Rich’s dish from Friday, the spaghetti carbonara with grated black truffles. For the secondi piatti, Monique ordered the piccata limone while I went with the Trippa Umbrian style. I was asleep at the wheel because I missed photographing the Trippa. Too bad because it was colorful and delicious. We asked for the check around 9:30 because breakfast will be 7:30 tomorrow with 8:30 being the tee off time.
My friend Cheryl from Lehigh commented how good the food is in Italy. I have contended that food in Europe is so much better than in the US — fresher because the providers are nearby — the classic farm to table. The wine lists are longer and with local wines that we don’t see because they are not exported. Thus, a carafe of very good house wine can be had for under 10 euros and a vintage wine at 20 euros. Our dinner last night of pasta (reasonable portions), second piatti, a half carafe of red wine, mixed salad, and an aqua frizzante (both Rich and Monique like the sparkling water, yes!), tax, and tip came to 40 euros each. With current exchange rates, just under $40. Where can you find this quality meal for the price in the US? Finally, one needs to ask for the check. No matter how busy, the diners have the table.
We start tomorrow. Barbara and Steve Diamond warned me about the long climb just after leaving Orvieto. From the ramparts during my morning walk, I could see the hill. But just like the others before, this bear will see the other side with the opportunity to experience more beauty as we walk to Rome.