Trip Of A Lifetime

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Is The Tower Leaning Or Have We Just Had Too Much Chianti?

On the day we went to Pisa, we also did a winery tour... so you just never know.

The weather in Pisa was stunning and after the grey day in Venice it was nice to go out and get some sunshine. The place itself is a tourist trap if ever I saw one. People were everywhere and there were stalls selling Tower of Pisa everything! Lamps, boxer shorts, mugs, bottles of olive oil... the list is endless. There were also a lot of people selling things that we had some difficulty linking to the Leaning Tower, or in fact to Italy. Toy soldiers, carved wooden elephants and drums?

The place itself is lovely once you suspend reality and try to imagine it without all the people. That the building is still there is just plain funny, but you almost need to see it to truly understand the lean. It blows me away to think that when they were working on it a couple of years ago they actually corrected it by something like 10 inches!

How nice of Adie to help the locals keep it up! (Sorry, had to do that one sideways!

As I mentioned earlier, we headed for a wine tasting in Lucca after seeing the famous tower. There we found out that there is a major rivalry between the people in Pisa and those in Lucca... and they get mean about it!

We were able to wander through the vineyard and check out the olive grove before going into the old cantina to taste 5 of the wines, some drink that is used for Holy Communion and grappa. The wines were really nice and left you feeling quite relaxed and happy. As we tried them all we also ate fresh salami and olives, sundried tomato and peccorino cheese with fresh honey. Bread dipped in fresh olive oil and aged balsamic. (I bought a bottle of the 5 year old balsamic and i hope I can manage not to open it before I get home!)

For 'dessert' we had almond biscotti dipped in the holy wine, which was very sweet. I quite liked that actually, but the wine itself wasn't palatable wihtout the biscuits.

We finished everything off with the grappa. OMG that stuff is vile. I can't believe that there were people taking shots of it. I wet my lips with it and thought my eyes were going to pop out of my head. Yuck.

This photo would have been taken somewhere between wine number 5 and the grappa. It was a really enjoyable afternoon.


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