Pizza, Beer, French Fries, Bruschetta and Wine

Our second day of class was short and sweet, two lectures in the morning then we were done for the day and weekend by 11 am. We went down to town for lunch, where I split a sandwich with a friend, grabbed some fruit from a little fruit stand, and finally got some gelato. After walking around and exploring the streets a little more, we came back up The Hill to the dorm. We had a little free time, so I went on my first jog outside of the city walls (where it is actually flat) to see a little more.


We went to an Italian class in the afternoon before cleaning up for a free wine tasting offered at the main wineshop in the piazza for anyone who wanted to try their newest wine. One of the restaurants wanted to throw us a “Welcome to Cortona” party, complete with free pizza, beer, french fries, bruschetta and a bottle of wine. The owner’s were the sweetest people, constantly coming over the make sure we loved the food and the town so far. They even brought out an extra pizza for us. We sat at dinner for a while, just hashing out embarrassing stories and enjoying the atmosphere.


Following dinner was another walk through the town and maybe a second gelato stop. We had plans to go to Florence today, but the train doesn’t run on Sundays so we are stuck in Cortona…..darn.

Culturally, I think one of my favorite things about Italy and their outlook on wine that I’ve learned so far is that they don’t drink it just to drink it, but they always pair it with food or a meal. You don’t see anyone with just a glass of wine. Our classes don’t just focus on wine tasting either, but the history of wine production, the different grape varieties, and how they are affected by the weather and climate of different areas across the world. Bet you didn’t know that one of the first areas that wine production was found in was actually Georgia…the country. Our lovely peach state of Georgia is also known to grown muscadines for the sweeter muscadine wine, though. Cheers to that



Under the Tuscan Sun

After an hour and a half car ride, 5 hour wait in the ATL airport, 9 hour flight to Rome, 5 hour wait in the Rome airport, and a 3 hour bus ride, I finally made it to Cortona! The view is nothing short of amazing, just the view from our bathroom overlooks the whole valley of Tuscany. Image

We had our first classes this morning, broke for a lunch in the Piazza (mozzarella, tomato, pesto and turkey sandwich), then came back for a short video followed by a foot tour of the town. The Piazza is where everyone in town congregates; restaurants, the market, wine shops, gelato, clothing stores are all located in this central area of town. We had our lunch on “The Steps” which reminded me of the not-so-catty version of Gossip Girl. Dinner was preceded by a wine tasting at a local restaurant where we have dinner every evening. Tonight we tasted a Pinot Grigio and a Brunello, which is a red wine and my personal favorite so far. Dinner was followed by a stop to the local (and one of the only) pubs, The Lion’s Well. The walk back to the dorms involves walking up a hill 4x the size of Brumby hill. I’m going to have a butt like Beyonce.



Testing, Testing

There’s really no way to make a “first post” not cheesy, so this is it. I leave for my viticulture and enology Maymester in Cortona in approximately 15 hours and decided to make a blog because why not? We’ll see what happens with this little space on the internet after June 3rd, I might decide I love rambling so much I’ll keep it up.

xo, clara