Thursday, June 30, 2016

Another Walk in Rome

 Bill and I walk across Via della Coppelle almost every day.
The wall colour is typical of the historic centre.
Roman fountains date back to a time when free, fresh water was considered a human right. They still flow every day, all day.
 Look up in Rome -- decorative elements, usually religious, abound.
Never pass a church without going in. This turned out to be the church of the Portuguese community -- with stunning marble walls within.
Buccone on the Via di Ripetta is a good place to buy excellent olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
Businessman/politicians all wear perfectly-cut suits with their recently trimmed hair -- very slick.
We had circled "International Priest's Day" on our calendar.
It did not disappoint.
 I had fun learning to use the camera in my phone -- especially for quick shots.
Walk this way.
Roman infrastructure -- feel free to drink.
Bill on our street in Rome: the Via dei Bergamaschi. Again the wall colour is typical
Romans handle graffiti by constantly painting over it. The lower paint is fresh.
Typical Roman with cellphone in one hand, cigarette in the other.
Typical tourist with map.
Old trees, old churches, old cultures.
Dusk in the Eternal City.
 Always colourful by our favourite bar on the Via del Governo Vecchio.
Dining in the dusk.
The peckish can always grab a snack (forno = oven).

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Concert at Sant'Eustachio

The Basilica di Sant'Eustachio is one of John and my favourite churches in Rome. We love its Romanesque belfry and its elegant 18th century Baroque exterior.
It is instantly identifiable by the stag of St Eustace mounted on the peak of the roof.
We often pass the church on our travels around the city -- it lies in the Historic Centre between the Pantheon and Piazza Navona.  The church has a longtime mission of helping the poor of Rome.
and presents regular free musical concerts to raise funds by donation. We've attended several concerts but last night's Voci in Canto (Voices in Song) was the best.
The dapper musical director and organist, Paolo Tagliaferri, introduced three very talented sopranos
(l to r) Hera Zerva, Marianna Bazali and Victorina Eekeloo (mezzosoprano). Each of them sang two solos by the likes of Handel, Vivaldi, Bach and Mendelssohn.
Miss Ivanshchenko's performance of Vavilov's Ave, Maria was simply thrilling. How wonderful it must be to discover that your voice is up to such a challenge!
John and I particularly enjoyed the duets. The blending of voices was exquisite.
As a climax to the evening the three women sang Handel's Consolati, o bella from the gallery in front of the 18th century organ. The acoustics in Sant'Eustachio are superb.
What an Italian evening! Monsignor Pietro Sigurani, the delightful and ebullient Rector of the church thanked the performers. John and I will remember his humorous and yet touching speech in support of the poor of Rome.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Lunch at Da Enzo in Trastevere

The restaurant Da Enzo in Rome's Trastevere comes highly recommended, but it doesn't open until 12:30 p.m.
 Bill and I got there a bit early and were soon part of a patient throng.
At the stroke of the half hour we were quickly seated and orders were taken.
The food was wonderful.
I ordered the classic Roman deep fried zucchini flowers stuffed with cheese and anchovies on our first visit. When it arrived it didn't look like much. 
 Then I cut into it. How do you say "yum" in Italian!
 Had to show you this bit -- a green bit of the flower. So fresh looking!
 Another Roman classic: pasta carbonara -- with eggs, and pancetta (a kind of bacon).
 Wanted you to see just how yellow the egg yokes were. The flavour was off the scale.
Bill ordered Pollo Romano (chicken baked with sweet peppers) on our first visit. Squisito (delicious).
 When we went back yesterday,  Bill tried another classic Roman dish: Cacio e Pepe (cheese and pepper). Note the extremely creamy sauce. He loved it.
My Lasagna Classica made with a couple of kinds of meat. I'm just showing you the crispy part at the edge.
 Here are a few of our contorni (vegetable side dishes). This is roasted eggplant and peppers.
 We don't eat chicory in North America. Steamed and served with oil and lemon it was the perfect foil for Bill's creamy pasta.
The house salad was a perfect tangy compliment to the lasagna. You can see a white piece of fennel buried in there -- it added crunch and a mild flavour.
We'll be looking for fennel when we get home.
Enough photography. I'm putting on my bib.
Time to tuck-in.