My college friends from San Francisco, Ian and Emily have been trying to plan a trip to Italy for a while. Ian’s schedule is pretty busy with his startup, Artillery, who are doing console style games in HTML. But they finally made it this July, and Rome was their first stop!
They got in late on Saturday. We didn’t know if they would have eaten or not so we had a cold dinner of buffalo mozzarella, ricotta, prosciutto, bread, and those types of things ready for a dinner as light or heavy as one would want.
Sunday Daniele was off from work, so that was out excursion day. We went up north, just over the boarder into Tuscany. There we spent the morning at the Terme di Saturnia (pictures). These are natural Hot Springs made of different pools. It was crowded since it was a Sunday in the summer, but we still had a little pool to ourselves some of the time.
In the afternoon we stopped at the small historical center of Saturnia. Then the very cute medieval town of Montemarano. Both of which are still on the Tuscany side. Our last stop was Tarqunia, an important Etruscan city and a little bigger than the other two. Tarquinia was having a special culture day, so we were able to enter and walk along the top of the ancient city walls and climb to the top of one of their towers.
At the end of this long day we had some nice thin Rome-style pizza from Dal Bersagliere, along with some fried appetizers and beers.
On Monday Emily and Ian took to Rome’s historical on their own. They saw most of the big sites.
Tuesday was Daniele’s 31st birthday. Ian and Emily continued seeing Rome’s center during the day, then after we all went out together for the evening. We started with Aventino Hill, where we polished off a bottle of prosecco with some cheese, boar sausage, and crackers while watching the sunset. Then we went to the restaurant Betto e Mary, which is known for its Roman cuisine. Daniele ordered some authentic, but unique, appetizers. He, Ian, and Emily all had some horse meat, veal intestines, cartilage, and pasta in a sauce made from the meat of a cow’s tail. I had cacio e pepe, basically a peppery mac ‘n cheese. After dinner we walked through the Lungotevere Expo, all the temporary bars, restaurants, and vendors that set up along the river banks in the summer.
Wednesday was their last day with us. Ian’s feet were bothering him, so Emily set off on her own to see the last few sites in Rome’s center that she didn’t want to miss. While she was out, Daniele made Ian and I lunch with gnocchi in seafood for them and pesto for me. Then he had to go to work in the hospital that night, while Ian, Emily, and I had dinner at the local Trattoria dar Bruttone on Via Taranto. A restaurant in the same Roman style as Betto e Mary, but we ordered more mainstream dishes.
Then on Thursday the two of them were off on the train to Almalfi!