And so it begins again, preparing for another adventure in Italy. This time my destination is Lecce in Puglia, which, if you think of Italy as a boot, is at the end of the heel.
I’m changing it up a little this time. Rather than roaming around to various towns and cities, I’m staying put for a week-long program at The Awaiting Table, scuola di cucina e vino. Translated, that means cookery and wine school.
My good friend Anne Press is my travel buddy for this trip. She’s studying to be a Master of Wine (hey, if you’re going to study to be something, that seems like a good something to be).
Anne is focusing on/specializing in the wines of southern Italy. When she asked if I was interested in traveling with her, I mentioned this cooking school I read about, and the rest is, cliche or not, history.
Let’s be clear, though, this is vacation cooking school. I will not be returning with plans to open my own trattoria in lower Manhattan. The emphasis of the week-long program seems to be learning to cook like an Italian, using the finest local, fresh ingredients, mixed in with cultural activities and the promise of some fabulous meals and great wines.
Coincidentally, last month the New York Times ran an article about Lecce in their travel section. Titled, “36 Hours in Lecce,” it provides really nice overview of the city.
Anne and I have rented a charming flat close to the school. This week I was in touch with the owners, Maurizio and Paola, confirming our final details. We will be their first guests from New York City and their teenage daughter is eager to meet us, as she wants to study in New York next year.
For those of you who’ve followed my other travel adventures digitally over the years, I’m pleased share this new blog with you. I plan to post regularly, whether I’m actively traveling in Italy or just daydreaming about it. I hope you enjoy it and I look forward to hearing your comments.