Another cloudy day, but as it was a city day, not so bad. We headed for Treviso, the largest city in the area. We had a city tour, starting in the area that’d been bombed during the war, but there were a few older buildings. As we went through the city, the balance of old and new moved to the older. There wasn’t the large square I’ve seen in some cities, it was there, but subdued. They had a lot of sculptures around the city, including one that had only been installed about a week before we’d arrived.
After the city tour, a bit of shopping (I decided to acquire a very unglamorous plastic mac, as my “waterproof” top wasn’t entirely), then lunch; before heading off for a walk along the river Sile, which has a lot of wildlife. There was also an area where old boats, no longer in use for transport have been abandoned. A very pleasant walk (and dry, no need yet for my new mac!)
Today was going to be a day in the heart of the processo region. Where the best grapes grow. Unfortunately for us, one of the key factors is lots of rain …
It was a very wet day. We started out in the rain – never the best way to start a walk. Ignoring the inviting coffee shop, we headed up a hill, pausing in someone’s garage when it was just too wet. The “elevenses” place was actually just a sheltered area, with no coffee. So, a decision was made to retreat to the staring point, head into the coffee shop & get the bus back to the hotel, abandoning the rest of the walk.
Later, we went back (in the bus) to where we would have had lunch; it was a ‘pub with no host’ – a small farmhouse where you could select your own goodies, and an honesty box. It also featured just up the hill, the famous processo machine. Which we tested, of course.
Finally, we had a visit to a winery, to see the machinery (there wasn’t anything really exciting happening at this time of year, as it was either in the fermentation tanks, or in the bottles – but they told us all about what happens during the rather short season for the main part of the process. Unlike Champagne the 2nd fermentation, which is under pressure is large tanks. (Champers does it in the bottle). They’d laid on a lovely spread of nibbles, gave us tastings of a number of different Proseccos. At the end, they presented us all with a bottle. Not sure which one it was, as it wasn’t one of the ones we tasted. It worked – Janine & I ordered a box of a mix of some of those we’d tested.
We’re back in Italy. This time, it’s the Prosecco Hills, so really not that far from the last set of posts in Lake Garda.
It’s a walking holiday this time, based in Soligo, right in the heart of the Prosecco hills. We’d timed it to fit in with my birthday. The journey out, despite having to go via Gatwick, was fine.
This morning’s walk was a bit of a rain coats on, rain coats off morning, but the scenery and villages were stunning.
We started in Cison di Valmarino, a beautiful small town, before heading up to Castelbrando. Then it was back down to Follino, where we had lunch (with prosecco), and a very tranquil 12th century cistercian abbey.
In the evening, we had some prosecco testing, which included the tranquille version -the non-fizzy one that they don’t generally export.
Then dinner – followed by birthday cake(let)
An early start to get to the airport – and a very tiny plane; just 3 seats across. Flight was fine … just a shame that though we arrived, Dad’s luggage didn’t. Lunch was a rather nice cafe just near hotel; then Janine and I had a quick explore of the town – trying to figure out the flattest route. After dinner, which was in the hotel, Janine and I returned to the town for am evening stroll.
The 2nd day saw the obligatory intro talk from the rep … Then a sit in the garden before heading into town before the first proper activity … boat ride to Sirmione, and a wander round there, with obligatory ice cream.