MANGIA

If you love coffee, …

Mid- morning – pick-me-up consisting of Tiramisu & Cappuccino

seafood, cheese,

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and carbohydrates, …
…then you’ll love eating your way across southeastern Italy.

Unfortunately, Linda does not drink cappuccino and vehemently dislikes shellfish of all kinds. The only thing that kept her from returning skinnier, was the carb laiden rich Italian pastries,

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Sweet creamy ricotta filled cannoli

pizza

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and pasta, and Linda’s all time favorite, sweet creamy gelato.

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And the only thing that kept any of them coming back heavier, was the combination of perspiring in the hot August sun, and the frequent walking throughout the hilly streets of Gaeta.

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Among the several evenings of Italian dining, a few stand out,

The Dutch Pub on Independence https://www.facebook.com/thedutchpubgaeta/about/?entry_point=page_nav_about_item&tab=overview was highly recommended by several Gaeta experts. The lack of air conditioning almost made it someplace we were going to pass up, however, when we discovered the little tables nestled in the cobblestoned side alley, we sank into a genuine European al fresco dining experience.

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Da Emilio,  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Pizzeria-da-emilio/255966927839493#_=_ located in Old Town Gaeta

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was so wonderful, that we returned for a second night.

Linda is in search of a recipe to recreate The Pasta Fagioli with a side of Foccia experience.

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Roaming around Rome

After saying Arriverdeci to Gaeta, Rob and Linda arrived at The Marriott outside of Rome.

http://www.marriott.com/hotels/hotel-photos/romcp-courtyard-rome-central-park/
The Balcony view of St. Peter’s Vatican was surreal.

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For 3 euros, and a 20 minute hotel shuttle bus ride, Rob and Linda found themselves outside the perimeter of the Vatican City.

 

The shops along were lined with several air conditioned souvenir shops with the predictable ticky – tacky – knicky – knacky  tchatkeys, like thimbles, key chains, salt and pepper shakers, t-shirts, etc…of iconic Italian landmarks.

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ruins

As they made their way across the bridge, in search of The Collesium, they were intised by the attractiveness of the narrow, European cobblestoned side streets.

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So they indulged their wanderlust and Linda in particular was fascinated by the genuine authentic-ness of the artisan smattering of shops that were tucked intermittently  among charming, yet historically rich architecture.

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They discovered authentic leather craftsman by going off the beaten path.

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Not surprisingly, for Linda this experienced actually surpassed the iconic landmarks like the Collesium

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and Trevi Fountain.

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The next day…in search of maintaining their authentic, Italian experience, Linda and Rob were pleasantly surprised when they walked from the Marriot to Taverna Sacchetti https://www.facebook.com/pages/Taverna-Sacchetti/142203162495524

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It was highly recommended on reviews.  When they arrived at 6pm, at first it looked like it was closed, however, the door was open.  They were the only ones there. There was no sign of anyone.
Their voice seemed to echoed when they queried “Bon Giornio”.  Seconds later, an adult man wearing a pepsi t-shirt, entered quickly and gestured for them to sit anywhere.  He was dressed in denim shorts.  He abruptly to take their order.  Meanwhile, another family of four also entered the ristorante and he also took their order, sans paper and pencil.  To their surprise and delight, this man is not only the waiter, but was apparently the cook as he could be seen him filling pots of water to cook spaghetti.  It got  even better, when he began to crank sheets of pasta through a pasta maker for Linda’s fetticini.

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Without a doubt – this couldn’t be a more authentic Italian dining experience.