Chocolate valley in Tuscany : Slitti maître chocolatier

Here I am today : by Andrea Slitti chocolate & coffee boutique in Monsummano Terme , 10 km from Pistoia. http://www.slitti.it
Andrea Slitti is a maître chocolatier from Tuscany : since 1988 won lots of prestigious prizes in The most renowned international & National contests .

Lovely Easter’s Windows & gorgeous chocolate eggs , any kind Of chocolate shapes, a Special smell Of Home … My Home ❤️❤️Made of sweet memories of childwood😍😍😍for every Easter lots & lots Of different egg sizes & many surprises Inside ( small presents !)
I had a Special coffee with chocolate & wipped cream topped with little pieces of crunchy dark chocolate …delicious!!
Enjoy My sweet tour today🎈🎈🎈💖💖💖

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I calzini rossi

Originally posted on Tramedipensieri:

La quercia da sughero è un segno caratteristico e tipico dei paesaggi e della cultura della Sardegna, elemento quotidiano degli uomini che da sempre hanno imparato ad amarlo e curarlo, preparandolo, di anno in anno, all’estrazione periodica.

Quercia da sugnero

Gli alberi dai calzini rossi.

 è un albero che risale all’era terziaria, precisamente all’Oligocene, ossia dalla costituzione del grande bacino mediterraneo, dove, secondo alcuni, esiste da più di 60 milioni di anni.

tappi di sughero

tappi di sughero

Fin dall’antichità i Fenici ed i Romani utilizzavano il sughero per sigillare recipienti contenenti vino, anche in Egitto, in tombe risalenti a migliaia di anni fa, sono state ritrovate anfore ancora chiuse con sughero e perfettamente conservate.

Pare che anche lo scrittore Marcel Proust amasse talmente le proprietà del sughero da farne interamente rivestire il suo studio, per isolarsi dai rumori esterni, del resto confermate dall’utilizzo negli strumenti musicali.

….il sughero naturale viaggia per mare, vista la sua…

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Ever been in a shoe factory?

Here we are : visiting a shoe factory as I LOVE shoes & especially Made in Italy ones👍👍😍😍😍all leather : starting from upper to sole ! No synthetic materials at all for The health Of your feet but also for your body itself .
In My region ~ Tuscany ~ Italy ,Where I live we have an old tradition of shoe makers , small factories &big ones (Such as Prada, Ferragamo & Gucci )are from this area.
I had The chance to visit many of them in The past 30 years as My
Father & I have been working as footwear agents for some of them .
My passion for shoes started since I was a child ( My father brought lots Of New samples at Home & can’t resist to try and walk on them ..)
At The present many Of ‘our ‘ factories closed for The taugh crisis & The biggest ones survived .
Have a Look Inside now …. A smell Of leather reminded me a beautiful period Of My life !

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Never smile at a …

Originally posted on Etcetera Etcetera Etcetera:

crocodile 2

Northern Territory 2003-4 (8 images)

Signs like these are not uncommon in the Northern Territory. It’s a reminder of the dangers you face when you cross the threshold into areas where nature rules and man may not necessarily be at the top of the food chain.

If you live in Australia, it is not unusual to hear in the news on a semi-regular basis about deaths caused by shark attacks and crocodile attacks. Actually there was a death last week from a shark attack. It’s a real danger to be aware of, although if you’re not from Australia, you may be more familiar with the more light-hearted side of it from Crocdile Dundee or the Crocodile Hunter, Steve Irwin.

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Pistoia New opening: STICKHOUSE ice cream shop!

Just on the historical via degli Orafi ( goldsmiths street ) of Pistoia a new ice cream shop opened last Saturday !
Creamy Stick ice cream and sorbets .
Hand made with fresh ingredients , gluten free & very very tasty for our summer days & nights in town .
An ice cream to go enjoying a Pistoia walking tour!
Now… Let’s see How Franco & Federico make them

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A tasting of TASTE 2014 in Florence, Tuscany

It’s The third time for me here : love This fair about food and wine, beer and chocolate, salmon and icecream , cookbooks and tasting storma, shows & chefs from all over Italy.
Florence is a Special location to host Such events & I really loved FUORI DI TASTE , dinners and meeting outside The fair, in restaurants & Hotels in Florence or just on The hills .
Food&the city I could say, but I Missed The glam This year and maybe something New to taste and to see…
Let’s have a Look to My picts now,
Enjoy! http://www.pittimmagine.com

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A mystic wedding in San Piermaggiore in Pistoia

Dated back to The longobard era ( VII century ) The monastry hosted Bendectine nuns since 1090 and The church had with a very relevant importance for The town Of Pistoia.
In a very beautiful painting titled ‘The mistic wedding ‘ The Badessa Of The convent used to welcome The New Bishop of Pistoia in a big bed in The middle of The Church & exchanging ring as a Real wedding .
Then , on a white horse , The New Bishop left The Church & went to The Bishop palace in The duomo square Where still is The beautiful palace nowadays.
Now This church is closed to public and just Open Yesterday in occasion Of Special spring days by FAI ( fondo per l ambiente italiano)That protects and restores monuments and Churches .
This empty and a bit destroyed place Made me think about The movie ” La Ciociara ” with Sophia Loren : what fo you think? Do you agree?
The old organ is Made by Tronci family as My previous post about cymbals & percussions in Pistoia , The UFIP .
The last Photo is a painting by Kristian Zahrtmann dated 1893-94 That represents The wedding between The nun & The Bishop , no more Inside The Church in a big bed as in The past times but outside The Church , in front of The main entrance sitting on two thrones .

Enjoy This secret church with a great history!

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UFIP EARCREATED CYMBALS from Pistoia, Tuscany!

In My town ,Pistoia, Where The Etruscans started making metal percussions instruments as early as 500 B.C. , still nowadays UFIP ( That in Italian stands for Join Italian Cymbals Makers)is producing them since 1931.
The heirs Of Tronci & Biasei families are running the foundry That produces entirely handcrafted professional cymbals.
Very famous composers as Puccini , Mascagni & Verdi were customers of the Tronci family .
Today ,Opera Houses like The New York Metropolitan , The Tokyo Opera & la Scala in Milano have chosen these extraordinary percussions as well many American & Italian artists .
Just have a Look Inside The foundry I had The pleasure to visit & so to let you see a special place Where the The magic sound comes from.

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Montechiari Estate top wines in Montecarlo , Tuscany!

When I saw The villa & the garden I thought : I am part Of a painting ! when you think or dream about Tuscany I am sure you should have this view only on your mind.
The location is so beautiful and so lovely you Wouldn’t want to leave it…

The owners ~ Moreno & Catherine ~ are really Special welcoming people with great class and charme and The WINE tasting is personally lead from them. All This Made it an unforgettable Tuscan & chic experience.
I Did many wine tastings but This is The best I have ever had, not only for The wines but for The location & The elegant & chic presentation,
They are producing very Good wines ( including a super top sparkling one Cuvée Brut Donna Catherine ) on a top Of a hill close to The small village called Montecarlo but here we speak Italian , not French , and we are in between Pistoia & Lucca, in Tuscany !
Montechiari estate is an unforgettable place for very few happy people Who have The honour to taste its wines with some delicious appetizer homemade by Catherine served in an exclusive tasting room with a wonderful view over The vineyards.

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Pistoia seen by a privilegiated view!

Piazza del Duomo square Seen from My Bank , Monte dei Paschi di Siena, the oldest Bank in The world ~ founded in 1472 ~ looks like a painting , an old postcard .
Since The middle age This square was a meeting point for merchants and it was the perfect location For an Open air market as it still nowadays every Wed & Saturdays morning.
It has always been The heart of The city with temporal & spiritual power united in The same square : still today we have The City hall , The Bishop palace, The court, The Cathedral, The Baptistery , The chamber of work and… The Bank !
Except Two of these buildings all The other are still in use so you can get married in The Cathedral, ask for a loan by The Bank, get divorced by The Court, then if you are a bit mad , get married again by The city hall…
I had The chance to Look out Of The balcony and these are My shots , hope you Will enjoy them!

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Photo book from Culinaryunderground in Italy ~ Liguria~2013

What a great , beautiful surprise receiving This photo book from Lori Leinbach ( founder,director & chef by CulinaryUnderground in Southborough – Ma – Usa ) and her husband Chuck Linton !

A very nice book in which we can remember & show to our friends and relatives some Of our best sweet moments spent together during This culinary tour in Liguria at The end Of last October planned by William Goodacre founder & director Of Tastes of Italy from London .

How many good memories we had together and lots of fun with a wonderful small group Of people with a great sense Of humor ( do you remember Picasso face? And ….Shot shot shot ?😂😂😂😃😃😃😃)
and a true interest in Italian food & our traditions .
Dealing with them was a Real pleasure !
See you soon again in Italy maybe in………you know where !!!😉😉😃😃
P.s.
The big night film was another present for me in honour of our BIG 7 NIGHTS during our tour !
so much delicious food😍😍😍in many restaurants & by Abbadia San Giorgio in Moneglia Where we stayed for The whole week.
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Macarons by LADURÉE New shop in Lucca

In a lovely location facing The Fifth Avenue Of Lucca That is Via Fillungo , LADURÉE Open a New shop together with Massimo Rebecchi fashion store at The first floor Of The same old ,historical beautiful building .
Same charming atmosphere for The French Macarons we love but with a feeling Of being hosted in a private palace That is very nice indeed .

I love The little green cart outside The entrance to encourage people to walk following The red carpet ! Yes 👍👍
as the door is not just facing The street but on a small court so you have pass through some coffee bar tables to reach it …but don’t be shy ,😉😉go ahead as it worths!

LADURÉE is in Piazza Mercanti by La Vela Rebecchi ‘ s store in Lucca

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EATALY IN FLORENCE NEW OPENING

Here we are in The heart Of Tuscany
The so called Renaissance cradle
A brand New EATALY is Open

You could see The Giotto’s tower bell from The top floor , it is in fact located in an old building That hosted in The past a big bookshop

Smaller compared to Rome sister I visited last May , it’s more as a big drug store with some corners Where to eat specialities typical Of Florence as The LAMPREDOTTO with panino , a street food experience you should try once in life if you visit This town.

I loved The dimention Of The shop : a mid size one with a nice hall in The second floor Where taste wine and have The chance to stay sitting outside on The small terrace to see some Of Duomo Square peaks just close to you .
EATALY IS IN VIA MARTELLI just facing Duomo Square

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A New year , New things I’ve learned

Last year I met many different kind of people from everywhere ..
I shared with them my passion for food, shopping and art and for The great addentare Of travelling!
But most of all The pleasure to stay together on The same way , same street , different language , same heart
I’ve met a lovely lady with a common friend in her birthplace ( New Mexico , so so far from me !) and just because I am still a curious girl although I nearly 50..
I Found out so many coincidences to let me think That we are all connected in a simple & strange way , a Special fil rouge connects people
That’s why This New year I Will be more curious , more asking and more conscious That WE MAKE THE DIFFERENCE just talking , asking, sharing!
Not keeping feelings Inside ourselves but Open to others because is there Where we can really feel at Home :
A very big Home called EARTH That is The same and The different one for everyone Of us.
Last year …….
I started This blog & met other bloggers in virtual way and in real life Having The opportunity to share ( again ) what we love doing …WRITING,TAKING PICTS , TELLING STORIES, HAVING FUN!

I learned that there is no death : my step father was between life and death for one month last year and now he is back with us with the same brilliant mind althought he is more than 80.. he struggled, we helped him with our prayers maybe and staying close to him when he seemed to be in another dimension between here and nowhere but he overcome and we too

I learned that.. WE CAN MAKE THE DIFFERENCE!
Yes, in my personal experience both in the Restaurant ,by my husband , or in my porfession as a tour leader, you can make a day brighter than another, YOU and ONLY YOU can do something special to others’ eyes to be chosen as their guide or as your relaxing stop where not just eat but enjoing a night an interesting chat with the owners.
Someone called me from Rome booking a table for dinner and said:
‘We are coming just to see you!’
WOW!! this is amazing!!
but it’s true and it brings happinees and satisfation to your job even if it is an hard one but it means that you can be chosen because you are not just a number among a thousand ones… you are YOU!

……Started being a TWEETER & loved it soo much ! Met Interesting people & let other people meet : That ‘s what I love most!!
I learned That we can feel people without watching Inside their eyes, only writing 😄because , YES, we can EXIST beyond our sights!

I learned to be more confident with My instinct as it never lies to me..

Nothing is impossible, we can be what we dreamt Of , just keep on dreaming and acting
trying to change what we don’t like & doing what we are born to.

Follow your inner star, it Will light even your darkest night❤️

The motto is : THE MORE YOU SHARE, THE MORE YOU HAVE 😍😍

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