Venice is the capital and largest city in the Italian region known as the Veneto. On previous visits we have been able to visit just a little of the area, but this time Tery and Greg had a car and asked if we would like to go on a little adventure with them. We didn’t have to be asked twice. Greg is an Italian driver in his heart and soul and handled the autostrata (super highways), the traffic circles and the back roads like a pro. Must be that Southern California boy in him!
Alan and I were the ones on the train in the morning and took the ten minutes train ride from Venice to Mestre. It costs 1 euro 25 cent each way. Italian trains are great and so reasonable. We were met at the train station by Tery and Greg and off we went, not really having a destination in mind. We drove through several very picturesque town and finally realized we were not far from the town of Asolo. Once we found a parking place we were off to have some lunch. We landed at Birreria Epoca Asolo or Epoca as we heard it called. We had an excellent leisurely lunch there with a meat platter antipasto, Tery and I having sausage, polenta and mushrooms and the guys having gnocchi with wild boar sauce. Once again, hunger trumped food porn right up to dessert where you can see we had already started the scrumptious orange crema when we took this picture.
After lunch we wandered around the town plaza, went into the Cathedral of Maria Assunta (we were lucky because they were preparing for the funeral of a 101 year old woman within the hour and we would have missed seeing it), and agreed we would all love to spend a few days in the town.
Since it was just around 3 and there were a few more hours of daylight, we decided to push onward to Bassano del Grappa. Alan and I had spent two nights and three days there in 2013 and were delighted to show Tery and Greg a few of our favorite places.
We then left to go back to Mestre but on the way saw this:
Tery and Greg dropped us at the train station in Mestre and we were back in the apartment by 8. They were leaving today for Milan and home so gave us the remains of their pantry including a bottle of Prosecco. Thanks, Guys, for a fun couple of days.
Today we arose late (well, I did at least), and left around noon for the Rialto and some food shopping. We didn’t bring the camera and have no pictures, sorry. First we stopped at Chiesa San Giovanni Elemosinario, a church behind the Rialto Market that we have never found opened when we passed. Totally unimposing, tiny place with a Titian and two Tintorettos along with many other paintings. This is one of the things I love about Venice! We had to go to the TIM store to put more message units on our Italian phone and so went to Cantina Do Mori, a cichetti bar around the corner from the TIM store. It was so good, little tapas like tidbits of sarde saor bruschetta ),sardines in vinegar), baccala bruschetta (salt cod), octopus, eggs and anchovies, artichoke hearts, pecorino, a meatball, and wine, of course. Coming out of there, we ran smack into a great butcher shop with the friendliest butcher. We wanted to get some pork chops for Sunday and wound up hearing about how he had been a butcher since he was ten. They were just closing so we were very lucky. Then to Casa del Parmigiano to buy cheese and sausages. We also did some vegetable looking but waited until we took the vaporetto back to our stop to shop. We are just steps off of Campo San Barnaba where the vegetable barges dock, and those vegetables are amazing. We then went quickly over to the super market for flour. Right across from the Punta Supermercato is Il Doge one of the best gelato places in Venice. Well, of course we had to get some, Bacio for me and Nutella for Alan. Tonight we have reservations for dinner at Quatro Feri, a new restaurant for us and one in our new neighborhood. Stay tuned for a review tomorrow.