Saturday, June 9, 2018

Day Trip: Montefalco 2018

  Sitting here at work...on a Saturday in June...waiting for magic to happen...WAIT!
  My whole life is magic happening, dang it.
  Glad I got that one figured out.

  In truth, I am sitting here contemplating on whether or not to write this post I seem to be writing.  Good music mix going on in the gallery (my favorite 80's & 90's alt rock), not super busy, sun is almost shining. Life is a-ok, baby. 

  So, let's get it on with this post I'm contemplating.
  Whist in our beloved Umbria this past spring, we did much driving about, hither and dither and where not and what not. Most every trip out was a trip to somewhere that Johnny could paint. He knew he wanted to paint around the land just north of Montefalco, in that valley out there, so why not make a day out of it?
  We love that area, and one of our favorite places to have lunch is in Montefalco...the wonderful L'alchimistsa. Oh, yummy.
  Day trip!

  We started out pretty early, enjoying the beautiful drive, listening always... Italian Top 40 radio, just a pinch too always...We sing along at the top of our lungs, even though we have no idea what we are singing. Does not matter. It's fun. Plus, these stations also include a big dose of Top 40 hits from the States, so we can keep up with all that. Why? Don't ask me...just adds to the general goofiness, I guess.
  We do like to belt it out, I gotta say. The car is the place we really let go.

  We found a road that veered off to the right, one we'd never been on, and took it for a good mile or so. We came to a place that we could pull the car over, and there were views to be painted.
The beginning of a painting.

  Johnny let me know that he'd be in this place for a while, so I took a look around, spotted a small hill town down the way, and figured it could make for a good walk.
  It did.

The wee village of Torre del Colle, just calling my name...

  I'll admit, I was hoping for a small local caffe, so I could stop in for a sip of proseco, but it was closed. I really enjoyed walking the few streets, and the views out the other side were incredible.
  Here are a few shots I took just strolling around...

A sweet little borgo...really nice.
I think I saw just one person out and about, though.

  The views out over the valley on the other side were super. I told Johnny that we need to take a nice ride out that way next time, just to see what we can find.

See that little road on the left? I want to be on that road some day.

  I walked down a different route to get back to the car and Johnny, and I was so glad I did, because I wandered across several terra cotta sculptures just out in the fields below.

The way back to my baby.

I can't find any info on these delightful works of art...

This one was really cool, too...

Love it.

This was my favorite.

  We both had had a chance to work up an appetite, so off we went to L'Alchimista for another fab lunch. Man, I'm glad we made a was packed, inside and outside. We had asked to sit outside when I called, and the day was just right for it.

  We were early, so we enjoyed glass of wine while people watching in Montefalco's sweet piazza.

Nice to enjoy some sunshine.

That's L'Alchimista, in all her glory.
I love this building.

  I believe we have had lunch here every time we've visited Umbria, except last July. Too damn hot to even consider it. It really is, for us, a must do. The chef always has something interesting for vegetarians, the pasta is great and they have an enoteca, as well, so we can purchase wine to bring back to The Nut.
  Speaking of's a couple of happy ones.

  Geez, I'm trying to remember what we ordered. I used to always take notes (smart!), but have become a real flake lately!
  I know we shared two appetizers...

A selection of goat cheeses with roasted asparagus.

This was really interesting. It's an artichoke sformata(like a soufflé) with burrata
and tiny lentils that the area is famous for. The pink is a reduced sauce of tomato water.

Johnny opted for one of the daily specials.
Stongozzi, a traditional Umbria type of pasta, with fava beans and artichoke.
Springtime in Umbria!

  Ok, I have to just put this out there. I almost always order the same thing here. I'll get Johnny to order something adventurous that I want to 'try', but I always know what I want.
  The 'house special' lasagna. It changes, but it's always beyond good.

Yeah, it's all that.
Porcini, red cannara onions, and radicchio. So good, I crave it.
Note the crispy pecorino cheese on top. Yep.

  We were super excited that they had agretti on the menu. We like it so much, and we never see it here in our part of California. I'll buy it at the farmer's market there, and cook it at The Nut.
  I would equate it to seaweed in texture, but not flavor. It tastes green.

Usually it's blanched, then tossed with good olive oil, garlic and lemon.

Dessert? Why, yes, please.
Biscotti with a glass of 'passito', a dessert wine made from Sagrantino grapes.
Happy artist!

I went down Decadent Avenue.
It was a good trip.

That would be almond gelato with a warm chocolate sauce. Thin toffee bits for crunch.
I seem to remember this being pretty darn great.

  It's fun looking back on this day.

Heavenly landscape around Montefalco.

  I do believe it's time to start planning the next trip back, eh?