Search This Blog

Thursday, April 9, 2020

In Primis

After spending the day at the Field of Miracles, we found dinner at In Primis. It's nearby, just a 7-minute walk.

In Primis is located at via Commeo Carlo Salomone, 32.

We shared a bottle of Assiolo, a red blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cab Franc for €25.

We ordered a sample of 4 pastas with 4 sauces for €12 per person. The Pappardelle with Cinghiale (boar sauce) was delicious and my favorite.

Ravioli with Ragu Toscano was also very good.

Paccheri with Alici e Crema di Bufala (anchovies and buffalo cream sauce). 

Riso with Gamberi Crema di Gorgonzola (beet, shrimp and blue cheese sauce). This was my least favorite. I didn't like the blue cheese sauce.

In Italy, you're charged coperto (cover charge) when you sit to eat so we were surprised there was no coperto here.

2017 09 30

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Field of Miracles

The Field of Miracles is where the major sites in Pisa are located. You'll find the Baptistry, the Duomo, the Camposanto Cemetery, the Museum of Sinopia, the Cathedral Museum and the Leaning Tower here.

Entry to the field is free, as is entry to the Duomo. You will need to pick up a timed admission ticket for the Duomo though. We bought a combo ticket to 3 sites for €8 and an additional €18 to climb the tower.

The Baptistry is in the foreground, behind that is the Duomo then the Leaning Tower.

After buying our tickets, we stopped in the Museum of Sinopia and watched an introductory video of the Field of Miracles.

 The museum housed numerous examples of sinopia, drawings traced on plaster as the first step in making frescoes. These sinopia were from the Camposanto and were uncovered when the building burned during a bombing in WWII.

Our next stop was the Baptistry. The Baptistry was founded in 1152 and is the largest baptistry in Italy. 

The octagonal baptismal font sits in the center of the building.

The nearby pulpit is elaborately decorated.

The double dome gives the Baptistry amazing acoustics, which is demonstrated every 30 minutes by the attendant on duty.

Our next stop was the Camposanto. It was built in 1277 to house the graves which had previously been scattered around the Cathedral.

Bonamico Buffalmacco's "Last Judgment" can be found in the Camposanto.

The star of the Field of Miracles is the Tower of Pisa. It was started in 1173 and acts as a bell tower. 

One of 7 bells on the tower--one bell for each musical note.

At the base of the tower, you can see the lean by comparing the different wall heights from one side

to the other.

There are timed admissions to climb to the top of the tower. View from the top of the tower.

On the grounds is a copy of the Capitoline She-Wolf sculpture, the symbol of Rome.

Nearby is a bronze sculpture of the Fallen Angel by Igor Mitoraj.

2017 09 30

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Grand Hotel Bonanno, Pisa

Our hotel in Pisa was the Grand Hotel Bonanno, located at Via Carlo Francesco Gabba, 17. It was a 15 minute walk to the Leaning Tower.

The hotel is a modern hotel on a major road. It's a 5-minute walk from the S. Rossore station but unfortunately we got off at the Centrale station and had a 25-minute walk.

Our room was large

and had a sitting area.

Bathroom was large as well.

Buffet breakfast was included. There were eggs, cold cuts, fruit, pastries, juice and self-serve cappuccino, espresso and tea.

2017 09 30

Monday, April 6, 2020

Ferry from Bastia to Livorno

With the Covid 19 shutdown, I have a lull in traveling. I finally have the opportunity to post our trip to Pisa and the Cinque Terre in September 2017. It followed our week in Corsica.

From Bastia, we took the ferry to Livorno.

The ferry terminal in Bastia is walkable from the downtown area.

The Moby ferry departed Bastia at 8:30am and arrived in Livorno at 12:45pm. One-way ticket was €23.80 per person.

You can bring a car onboard.

The ferry had a Warner Brothers theme. I wonder if WB knows that. We didn't have assigned seating so we just found a seat in the lounge. Some people found benches and were able to take naps.

When we arrived at the port of Livorno, we walked to the bus stop and took the LAM Blu bus to Livorno Centrale train station. Cost for the bus ride was €1.20 for the 4 km ride. 

The train ticket for the 15 minute ride to Pisa was €2.60. There are 2 stations in Pisa--the Centrale and S. Rossore. Find out which station is closer to your hotel so you don't have to walk a long distance.

2017 09 30

Sunday, April 5, 2020

Kahlua Pork Recipe

Making your own Kahlua Pork is so easy.

If you have a slow cooker:

6 lb pork shoulder (don’t use shoulder with fat and skin)
2 ½ Tbs coarse salt
2 ½ Tbs liquid smoke

Cover pork shoulder with salt and place in slow cooker. Add liquid smoke. Cover and cook on low for 16-20 hours. (No need to add additional liquid.)

If you have an Instant Pot:

6 lb pork shoulder (don’t use shoulder with fat and skin)
2 ½ Tbs coarse salt
2 ½ Tbs liquid smoke
1 cup water

Cut pork shoulder into 2 inch cubes. Add salt and liquid smoke and mix well.

Add water to Instant Pot then pork. Cook on high pressure for 50 minutes. Don't use instant release.

I prefer the slow cooker method because the meat is more tender.

2020 03 16

Saturday, April 4, 2020

Ohana Hawaiian BBQ

Ohana Hawaiian BBQ is located at 2150 Santa Rosa Avenue, near Trader Joe's and Costco.

My favorite is the Kahlua Pork--$9.55. It has a nice smoky flavor and the cabbage makes me think it's healthier. Their macaroni salad is very good and I'm glad it's only 1 scoop. Just enough to satisfy my craving.

2020 03 08

Friday, April 3, 2020

Brown Derby Cobb Salad

Had a craving for Cobb Salad and found this recipe for the Brown Derby classic in Saveur.

1 head Romaine lettuce
1/2 head Iceberg lettuce
1/2 bag arugula
3 hard boiled eggs
2 tomatoes
1 cup rotisserie chicken
1 avocado
6 strips bacon
Crumbled blue cheese

3/4 cup canola oil
1/4 extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 Tbs fresh lemon juice
3/4 tsp dry mustard
1/2 tsp Worcestershire
1/4 tsp sugar
1 clove garlic, minced

Chop the lettuce into small dice and add the arugula. Mix the 3 lettuce.

Chop hard boiled eggs and tomatoes. Cube the chicken and avocado. Cut the bacon into small pieces. Arrange on top of lettuce in rows.

Make the dressing by adding all ingredients to a small jar. Cover and shake vigorously to incorporate all the ingredients. Add the dressing to the salad and toss all ingredients after all guests have appreciated the beautiful arrangement.

2020 03 01