After two weeks in Italy I have a problem. A pasta problem to be exact. I just got used to having pasta every single night. Amazing pasta. Oh my goodness, the food in Italy is so good. It is surprising how many different ways you can have pasta and the skill it takes to cook this simple dish.
In Bellagio on Lake Como we took full advantage and tried it every which way. One little restaurant on a tiny alley opened promptly every evening at 7 pm to a line up of people waiting to get in to grab one of the few tables in this little gem. Thoughtfully the owners had a box full of cushions outside and people would grab a cushion and sit on the steps while they waited for their table.
Even more thoughtfully the owners opened up a wine bar just across the steps (cannot call it a street) where you could sample some of the best Italian wines and when your table became available the cook would stroll across and summon you to your table. Bliss. How many ways can I eat pasta and drink Prosecco?
Now you might think that eating pasta every night (as well as drinking prosecco) might add to your waistline. And you might be right. YIKES. However if you choose to stay in Bellagio you won’t want for exercise. I am sure every hotel in this little town that may have an exercise room will find their treadmills and stairmaster machines unused. Just getting around the town is a workout. My hotel kept sending me warning emails that I would be required to walk up 38 stairs to gain access to the front door – and carry my own bag. Fortunately I was travelling with carry on (I feel quite proud of that).
But here’s something they don’t tell you. The cobbled stones on the streets of Bellagio are some serious cobblestones. Boy, you will not need to go for reflexology after walking around the streets for an hour or so.
Strangely enough every restaurant we visited for pasta was excellent – except for one. That was the one marked No 1 by Tripadvisor. It didn’t feel like we were in Italy at all. The manager was suave and smooth and while the food was good I don’t think there was a single local anywhere near the place.
After a week back in Calgary we just had to go out for some pasta – we were suffering withdrawal symptoms. Well what can I say?