Thursday, September 13, 2018

Back in Spello

Tuesday morning Dr. C. and I woke up to this view over the valley.  Arriving on Monday afternoon, we soon caught up with our friends and family here, and walked home from Enoteca Properzio about 10 p.m.
Our apartment here is on the ground floor of an old Palazzo, the views and outdoor space are breathtaking.  Days here in Spello start with collazione, breakfast at our favorite bar, Bar Il Giardino Bonci. Italian breakfast is usually a cornetto (Italian croissant) and a coffee drink of some sort, we prefer the cappuccino for breakfast.

The weather has been sunny and hot, in the 90's, so we do the Italian thing, have lunch take a rest and then go out for a stroll in the late afternoon, sometimes stopping at Enoteca Properzio for an apperitivo.  Last night we took a tour of Il Molino (the mill) restaurant, which is next to the enoteca. In the 20 years we have been coming here, I'd never been inside. 
Owner Roberto Angelini and the Chef
It has a lovely outdoor space on the street, but we'd never been inside.  Some of the walls inside date back to the Roman times. 

Maitre 'd, Gianni, he will take good care of you anytime

Roman wall

The original structure built in the 1300's was an olive mill, pressing the local olives into oil.   Umbria is proud of its olive oils, and although the olives are no longer pressed here, but on the outskirts of town, the wheel is still here. 
Two guys and an olive press
The restaurant has garnered many awards over the years, and the wine list is now supervised by Enoteca Properzio, so that you know the wine pairing will be remarkable. 

At night the outdoor space is magical
Today we are joining friends from London for lunch and wine tasting at Enoteca Properzio; as often as we have been here, this never gets old. We learn about new wines, and I get ideas for pairings, and recipes to serve with them.   Ciao for now.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

The Goodwood Revival

At the end of our Aston Martin rental we decided to attend the Goodwood revival.  Goodwood is a huge deal here in Britain, there is a horse racing course, a car racing track and an estate.  People come from all over in their classic cars to see the spectacle that is the Goodwood revival.

Attendees dress up in period costumes; many men in RAF uniforms, and tweed jackets, women in 50's and 60's clothing, and there are hairdressers on site to give you that period look.
High Street, where everything is for sale
It's all great fun, and there are hundreds of stalls with people selling all manner of revival clothing, cars and parts, and anything that could be considered vintage.  There is even a Bonham's auction of classic cars.
A little vintage Kitsch
Dr. C. wanted to watch a few of the races, and so armed with ear plugs (these cars/motorbikes) are LOUD, we sat in the grandstands, and watched a few races.
Vintage motorcycles

 Young women were dressed up in mini-dresses, and stood on the track to mark the places where the cars should start.  I came to the conclusion that there is a reason these dresses went out of style.

After a long day, we headed back to the Coach House, and turned in early, since we needed to get the Aston Martin back to its owner.  After spending the day in Goodwood I'd recommend it as a bucket list for car enthusiasts.  Heading to Spello for 6 weeks and more adventures, this time in an Alfa Romeo Giulia.  Ciao for now.

Classic Cars and The National Motor Museum

Dr. C. and I rented this Aston Martin DB7 from a company in the UK.  Although its outward appearance is gorgeous, there were a few things that weren't working to make this experience less than perfect; no air conditioning, no side mirror controls, windshield washers didn't work, and a few other things to make us a bit irritated to say the least.  When we joined the car touring group, most of the group owned much older cars, with less bells and whistles, but they were well maintained.  This Aston was not.  If you plan to do this, I recommend that you get a few quotes, and ask for references.  That aside, we had a great time traveling with the tour group from Classic Traveling,  and highly recommend their tours; they research each place, provide you with pre-programmed Sat Nav, and suggest places to visit and to eat on each day.  We were so impressed with the way the days were planned, and with the quality of the touring. 
Our next trip was to Beaulieu, (which the British pronounce Bewlee) the home of the National Motor Museum.  To get there from Westbourne, was about an hour's drive, but first a pub lunch at The Stags Head.  

right around the corner from our Coach House

Cottage pie with some of the best pan sauce I've had in a while

Bacon and Egg sandwich for Dr. C
Heading out to the New Forest, we crossed flat lands dotted with wild horses and donkeys.
Almost like Misty of Chincoteague

This is what a traffic jam looks like in the New Forest.  Beaulieu was owned by Lord Montague, who had a love for cars, and the collection here is staggering.  Being married to someone who reads every plaque I am happy to enjoy the beauty of these cars and motorcycles, but I'm also happy to sit and wait, which I usually do.  We usually open and close museums since Dr. C. is such a history junkie and car nut. When I was done looking at the cars,  I sat down with one of the docents, an older gentleman who had known Lord Montague and got the story of how he'd started collecting cars,  then build something to store them in, and at some point, people started giving him motorcycles.  He then needed a place to store them, so he tore out a lower kitchen in his manor house, and stored them in the basement until the museum was built.
Here are a few highlights from the tour.  

Kiddie car

I LOVE these

3 wheeler

The original car from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
double decker

camper made entirely of Legos

An orange car

Formula 1

Dr. C dreaming

only Harley in the place
Dr. C. and I were huge fans of the BBC show 'Top Gear' with Jeremy Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond.  They now are starring in the Amazon show 'The Grand Tour', which we also love. I'm not even a car person, but this trio makes me laugh, and they are a lot of fun to watch.
In a separate building we saw some of the cars from the series before Clarkson, Hammond and May left.

Limousine made from a Fiat


sailboat car

Sustainable car


Tour of Vietnam on motorbikes

Double decker

Mini cooper they took to India

Throughout the series they tried to destroy this truck, without success, it is in the museum in its last state of being.
Toyota Hilux
It was a beautiful sunny day, and we headed back to Westbourne, across the New Forest to get ready for our 5 a.m. wakeup call to go to Goodwood Revival, a classic car show, race, and market, as well as an amusement park for children.