1. What do you love about Pisa?
It's a city of a perfect size. One can walk it from end to end. And on such walks will frequently bump into someone you know. Might even have to stop and share a vino, apperitivi and conversation.
The people we've met here are open, warm, friendly - and especially well educated about their country, its history and art and particularly their city. Politics as well. Read, enjoy the arts, film, music, etcetera. So living and having conversations here are more rewarding than many places we've lived.
Also, when you bump into friends or acquaintances you are always greeted with a hug and two kisses. A very nice custom.
2. What is your favorite local dish?
I am a seafood lover and especially love the various preparations of Pulpo ... Especially the preparation at Il Compano - where they grill it, it's super tender and fat, and served with a wonderful walnut pesto. The pastas at many restaurants are outstanding of course. Had an amazing ravioli with curry at La Tana. The seafood salads - always varied - always good. The steak Fiorentino (which we've only tasted at a friend's party) looks amazing. And the pizza - not anything like an American style pizza. Excellent at many restaurants.
3. Was your mom a good cook, and can you share one of her recipes?
My Mom was a good cook. My dad truly loved her foods. She made lovely crepe style pancakes, chicken fricasee, leg of lamb, pot roast and more -- and taught me how to love seafood and tongue and swiss cheese sandwiches. No recipes here, I'm afraid.
4. Your favorite gelato flavor?
My favorite gelato flavor is Chocolato Fondente. But the pistacchio, nocciola and fragola are not far behind.
5. Your favorite spot in Pisa?
We tend to spend our time mostly on the north side
of the river where we have several favorite places. We have apperitivi
sometimes at Mi Amore (near the fruit and vegie vendors - across from R. Il Compano) where several friends tend to gather - or a bit further up at Modus.
Favorite depends on where one is meeting one's friends. The other favorite spots might be anywhere along the Arno - so beautiful. Very nice to sit and watch the scene and feel the breeze, watch the sunset - at Bazeel, right along the Arno.
Or on P. Berlina where we go occasionally for yummy Gelato. The three good museums along the Arno - and on the South side of the River - the Arsenale for excellent films, and the pleasant P. Pera.