Italia Per Due: Week 15
This is it!
Well, our time here in Italy has expired as we fly out tomorrow back to the United States. This has been an amazing experience and it has gone by way too fast. Spending the first twelve weeks studying and cooking in a nine-hundred-year-old castle with a beautiful Electrolux kitchen has been a unique and amazing experience. We also got to learn a lot as we traveled around Puglia with Professor Francine Van Hertsen. We went to various churches and historical sites learning about art and the long history of the region that we were fortunate enough to live in.
During the time that we spent here in Italy, I had the opportunity to travel and see other regions and cities including Rome, Pompeii, Naples, Milan, Florence, Pisa, and Bologna. These were great experiences and it was wonderful to experience other regions in Italy and view how different the cuisine and peoples’ lifestyles are in each area.
My last three weeks were well spent at Tormaresca Winery. It was an amazing experience to see how the vines are maintained, how wine is put in the bottles, and getting to see the vines start to produce leaves. We also had the opportunity at other locations near Tormaresca to visit and work at during our time here including Pasticceria Schiraldi, Sabino Leone ( an olive oil producer), Pietro Zitto’s Antichi Sapori, Villa Carafa (catering venue) and Masseria Maggiuli (cheese producer).
Chardonnay vines flowering in the afternoon sun
I want to take the time to thank all 14 of my classmates who helped make this such an amazing experience. I would also like to thank the CIA faculty, local artisans, winemakers, and staff for teaching me and exposing me to some amazing things. A special shout out to the staff at Phonogram Club who provided a lot of fun memories in Ugento. I also would like to thank all the staff at Tormaresca for being such great hosts and allowing us to work for them for three weeks on their beautiful Bocca di Lupo estate. It has been such an amazing time getting to experience all the things that we did.
I consider myself very lucky to have met everyone that I did during the last fifteen weeks and together we made it an unforgettable experience. I am anxious to get home and relax for three weeks before returning to the CIA to complete my last semester of school. To end this blog, I would also like to thank the readers for following this journey as well as the editor Nancy Cocola and blog master Joshua Auerbach, for reviewing my blog each week and making sure that it would be a good read. Thank you, everyone…until next time, goodbye!
By Adam Shoemaker
Un Grazie Mille!
For my final blog post I want to thank some people and reflect upon my experience in Italia! Now that I am home in New Jersey, I truly miss living the Italian lifestyle—from being immersed in the food, culture, wine, agriculture, and shopping, and being surrounded by friends. The memories will stay with me and my classmates forever. We’ll remember everything from the small bumps in the road to all the adventures we had and discoveries we made together! I am also thankful for the lifelong CIA friends I made and the new one I’ve made here in Italy!
All of us in front of the Duomo in Florence
Reflecting back, my friends and I ate some of the best food, freshest vegetables, most amazing pasta, drank the best beer and wine, and had exciting adventures traveling to new cities! What I miss the most about Italy is the access to all the travel that is possible! In three months, I traveled to every big city in Puglia, Rome, Milan, Pisa, Naples, Pompeii, Florence, and Bologna! But I will also miss coming home to our little town, to our house in Ugento to rewind and gather at our kitchen table.
Most of all, I want to thank our CIA faculty who organized and lived through this journey with us, for all their time and effort to ensure we had the best experience during this concentration. I also want to thank our Italian host for treating us with the utmost respect and hospitality! Lastly, I want to thank all my friends for making this an amazing experience, and creating unforgettable memories with me! This is not goodbye Italia…this is a ci vediamo presto…see you soon!!
By Angela Piccinich