On to Umbria

By Catherine | On Sep 30, 2013 | No Comments

Thursday we said goodbye to the Villa Montecastello and headed east into Umbria and the town of Gubbio that would be our home for the next three nights.  Gubbio is built into a steep hillside and dates to the early 1400’s.  We have been staying at Relais Ducale, a charming old hotel that features beautiful patios and gardens.  One of…

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Siena

By Catherine | On Sep 27, 2013 | No Comments

Tuesday’s destination was Siena. I had a brief visit there three years ago and was anxious to return.  Siena is built on seven hills and to visit the city requires traversing many steep streets.  It is known for its magnificent black-and-white-striped cathedral and also for the bareback horse race called the Palio, held in July and August, and whose origins…

Pienza and Montalcino

By Catherine | On Sep 26, 2013 | 1 Comment

On Monday we made the drive to Pienza, a tiny Renaissance village.  The views out over the rolling hills were spectacular and I wandered the cobbled side streets taking in the charming architecture and browsing in small shops.  From Pienza, we made a stop at a beautiful 12th century Benedictine abbey, Abbazia di Sant’Antimo, with a bucolic setting among olive…

Andiamo a Toscana

By Catherine | On Sep 24, 2013 | 1 Comment

On Saturday, our group met at the Rome airport and off we went to Tuscany.   It is about a three hour ride and we were all glad to arrive at our beautiful home for the next five days, the Villa Montecastello, which is in the area of Monteriggio.  The villa dates back nearly 1,000 years and was originally a…

Kudos to the Culinary Team at Cincinnati State

By Catherine | On Sep 8, 2013 | 1 Comment

Last month I visited my home town of Cincinnati to visit friends and attend the Western and Southern Tennis Masters tournament. The culinary highlight of the trip was a wine tasting dinner at The Summit, a restaurant operated by the culinary arts program at  Cincinnati State.  The wines were presented by Vintage Point, a distributor with an eclectic collection of…


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