13 August 2018

Piedmont, Italy

Last summer, my brother and I surprised our Dad by booking flights to Italy and a villa in Piedmont for a relaxing long weekend to celebrate his 60th birthday.  It was my nephew's first holiday and we chose a villa in a charming, quiet little town called Trisobbio with the intention of doing little else than reading and chilling by the pool, pottering and going for lunch in nearby towns, and cooking dinners at the villa at night.

Family lunch at Villa Sparina in Piemonte, Italy - travel & style blog

We visited the little town of Ovada for lunch in a tiny sun-soaked square, the Roman aqueduct arches along the Bormida riverbank just outside the town of Acqui Terme, ate stracciatella gelato (my favourite), wandered around the pretty town of Asti and marvelled at the beautiful 13th century cathedral, and walked across the hills (Piemonte means 'at the foot of the mountains' after all) in the baking afternoon sun to the nearby village of Treiso to visit Ca' del Baio The winegrowers has been a family affair for four generations - we chatted with Giulio Grasso, the great-grandson of the original owner, tasted some fantastic organic whites and reds, and bought a mixed case of wines to drink at the villa and take home.

Pink hydrangeas in Piemonte, Italy - travel & style blog

Trisobbio in Piemonte, Italy - travel & style blog

Asti cathedral in Piemonte, Italy - travel & style blog

On my Dad's actual birthday, we hopped in the car and drove to the beautiful Villa Sparina nearby for lunch on the terrace at Ristorante La Gallina, overlooking the rolling Monterotondo vineyard hills.  I love those long, leisurely al fresco lunches, and nobody does it better than the Italians.  We started with some celebratory Champagne, then went for the tasting menu and a couple of bottles of local Gavi.  It was a lovely afternoon and the highlight of the trip for me - I'd definitely recommend visiting if you're in the area, and I'd love to go back one day to stay at Villa Sparina.  I also want to explore more of Piemonte, especially Turin, so hope to return one day soon.  As my boyfriend drove over from France to join us, our return flights were from Nice, so he and I left on the morning of the fifth and final day to drive along the coast and spend the afternoon at the ace Le Voilier Plage beach club in Nice before our evening flights home.  What a bellissimo trip!

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Acqui Terme aqueduct in Piemonte, Italy - travel & style blog

Stracciatella gelato in Asti, Italy - travel & style blog

Ovada in Piemonte, Italy - travel & style blog

Lunch at Ristorante Gallina, de Villa Sparina in Piemonte, Italy - travel & style blog

Sunny Asti streets in Piemonte, Italy - travel & style blog

Dusk in Piemonte, Italy - travel & style blog

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