Enjoying Italy by Visiting Orvieto, Umbria

May 9

A woman watches from above as we ramble around ancient Orvieto

Just off the plane at Leonardo da Vinci International Airport, George and Susan Then from Florida were welcomed by guide James Derheim for their second trip with European Focus. Last year, it was Germany and George’s ancestral towns of Amberg and Nurnberg. This time, it’s Susan’s turn with visits to Orvieto, Tuscany, the Ligurian Coastline, Austrian Alps and finally, an favorite from last time, Rothenburg ob der Tauber in Bavaria before the return trip.

A fresh taste of tomatoes, garlic and olive oil at Trattoria Da Carlo

We took the back roads from Rome driving through the pretty countryside of Lazio before arriving at our country inn, the impeccable Locanda Rosati just outside of Orvieto. We’ve been staying here with guests since 2003 and everyone loves it. After a brief freshen up, we drove into Orvieto for lunch at the Trattoria Da Carlo, our new favorite place for lunch, tucked away in a quiet little square off the main street. This insider’s locale is run by the charming, young Carlo and his mother. Sometimes, there are fireworks between mother and son but that’s just part of the fun. For lunch, bruschetta and tagliatelle with fresh asparagus.

The Cantina Foresi is still there after all of these years. So is the wine!

Afterward, a ramble around Orvieto. George remembered visiting a wine cellar 20 years ago while here on a business trip with his wife, Susan. We found that wine cellar and in the deepest regions of the cellar, which is cut into the tufa rock which Orvieto is perched upon, hundreds of bottles of wine with thick layers of cobwebs and mold. These bottles have been here for fifty, sixty years, we were told. Any good? Probably not. Orvieto wine is made to drink now.

We plan to do that, tonight, at the Locanda Rosati.

A cat takes a nap in a potted tree along the main street in Orvieto

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