A Taste of Burgundy in California Wine Country

A Taste of Burgundy in California Wine Country

Sometimes the recipe for a special evening is created in a surprising and exceptional way. French flavors, California wine, charming hosts, new friends, and a remarkable venue provided the ingredients for our lovely evening in Santa Rosa, California hosted by Fallot Mustard and DeLoach Vineyards.

A Day in Aix-en-Provence: Top Things to Do

A Day in Aix-en-Provence: Top Things to Do

The third day of our busy Provence trip brought us to Aix-en-Provence. As soon as we arrived on this weekday morning in December, we noticed the bustling, upbeat vibe of the city as people were shopping the markets, strolling the streets, and socializing in cafés.

European Capital of Culture: Highlights of Marseille

European Capital of Culture: Highlights of Marseille

“Marseille is a way of life”. It’s the playing of pétanque (similar to bocce), the imbibing of pastis (an anise liqueur developed in Marseille as a substitute for the banned absinthe in 1915), the savoring of Bouillabaisse (for which Marseille is famous), and a certain “joie de vivre”. It is also a way of life that embraces the diversity of this melting pot on the Mediterranean and its rich culture, history, and art — giving an ample number of reasons for its designation as a 2013 European Capital of Culture.

Cassis by the Sea

Cassis by the Sea

“Qu’a vist Paris, se noun a vist Cassis, pou dire: n’ai rèn vist,”

“He who has seen Paris and who has not seen Cassis can say … I have seen nothing.” Frédéric Mistral (1830 – 1914), beloved Provençal poet and Nobel Prize laureate

After just a few hours in this village on the Mediterranean coast, I began to understand.

South Lake Tahoe: Sail, Spa, and Spin(ners)

South Lake Tahoe: Sail, Spa, and Spin(ners)

By Mr. TWS — Sweeney and I love to go to Lake Tahoe, usually to ski or enjoy a summer break. Since it’s only a bit more than three hours’ drive from our home in the San Francisco Bay Area, we’ve been there many times. This time, there were a few firsts that we enjoyed.

Off-Season Highlights of Provence

Off-Season Highlights of Provence

There’s no blooming lavender in sight. The Cavaillon melons won’t be ripe until summer, and the waters of the Mediterranean are a little chilly for swimming.

There are still many reasons to visit Provence in the off-season as we discovered on our trip in December.

From Foggia to Bari: Our 7-Day Puglia Road Trip

From Foggia to Bari: Our 7-Day Puglia Road Trip

Cone-topped circular stone buildings (trulli), ancient cities on hilltops, white sand beaches, brilliant blue sea water, and olive groves galore – those are just a few of the sights you’ll see traveling the Puglia region of Italy on a road trip.

Top 5 Reasons to Visit Emilia-Romagna

Top 5 Reasons to Visit Emilia-Romagna

It’s not a secret that I fell in love with the Emilia-Romagna and Puglia regions of Italy last year. As in Puglia, in Emilia-Romagna we met many wonderful people who were friendly, helpful, and very understanding of our extremely limited Italian language skills. Now I want to highlight some of the things you can do when you visit Emilia-Romagna to make it special for you, too.

One for the Road: My 5 Day Nova Scotia Road Trip

One for the Road: My 5 Day Nova Scotia Road Trip

Road trip, food, wine… count me in! I love being behind the wheel heading down highways, new or familiar, and experiencing local food and wine along the way. So I was excited about a culinary trip in the South Shore and Bay of Fundy/Annapolis Valley regions of Nova Scotia

5 Favorite Highlights of Ferrara Italy

5 Favorite Highlights of Ferrara Italy

It was a whirlwind of a day trip to Ferrara, Italy from our base in Verucchio. We started out early for our 2-hour drive to Ferrara, 90 miles to the north (about 30 miles from Bologna). We left the driving to our Italian blogger friend, Alessandra Catania…

CabFestNV: Celebrating Napa Valley Cabernet

CabFestNV: Celebrating Napa Valley Cabernet

Cabernet Sauvignon, the red wine for which Napa Valley is especially famous, is Mr. TWS’s favorite wine. Cabernets from this famous Northern California wine region have a distinct cachet and are spoken of with respect in many of the world’s wine regions where first-class Cabernets are produced.

Going Full Circle at Long Meadow Ranch

Going Full Circle at Long Meadow Ranch

Almost any day in California’s Napa Valley is a good day, even in the winter when the vines that cover so much of the region are bare. The scenery is still beautiful and the fresh air is rejuvenating. And if you know where to look, there are special Napa tours and experiences …

Our French Connection: XCOM Global Mobile Hotspot

Our French Connection: XCOM Global Mobile Hotspot

Before heading off to France in December, Mr. TWS and I considered the options for staying connected while we were away. More than needing phone coverage, we’d need plenty of internet access for browsing the web and posting to social media. We decided to try the XCOM Global Mobile Wi-Fi Hotspot for the 10 days we’d be in Paris and Provence.