What is the first thing you do or place you go to when you land?
Assuming I land in Rome, first thing is always a slice of pizza al taglio, the city’s famous pizza by the slice. I do pizza bianca with zucchini every time. That deliciously oily, just-warmed up snack is Rome in a bite. The Forno at the back of Campo dei Fiori does it best.
What Italian city do you keep going back to? Why?
It has always been Rome. There is something about the mix if grit and glamour, of imperfection and pride, set to the backdrop of so much western history that will always appeal. Though Bologna and Palermo are close seconds.
When you think of Italy, what is the first thing that comes to mind?
That there is still so much I have not seen and so many places I have not been to; that I have to get back. Italy is the only country in the entire world I would rather return to if given the choice between that and seeing somewhere new. It is insatiable.
Give away one helpful tip on how to travel in italy.
Don’t want to sound cliche, but you have to travel by car. The real beauty of Italy happens between the cities.
If you could take something, anything, from Italy back home, what would it be?
The ability to manouver a vespa in an area like the centro storico of Palermo. Which is historic, chaotic and beautiful but riddled with potholes, crowds and a lack of driving etiquette. If you can vespa there, Manhattan’s a breeze.
How would you describe Italy in one sentence?
It’s the boyfriend you just can’t quit; you forgive the lows (shit doesn’t not work, banks close too early, strikes are a national pastime…) Because the highs are so high.