Sunday, July 27, 2008

Italy, Day 1, 6/15/2008

  • lunch: pizza with zucchini; pizza with mushrooms and sausage
  • dinner from Fratelli la Bufala: stewed buffalo with arugula and mozzarella; pasta with a creamy tomato-basil sauce and two kinds of buffalo milk cheese

The most exciting part of our day's transportation was the taxi ride from the Fiumicino airport. On two-lane roads, our taxi driver invented a third lane for himself. Whenever a red light stopped the flow of traffic, he used his imaginary lane to skip to the front of the stopped cars. When the light changed, he sped ahead of them.

After we saw the ruins at Ostia Antica, which were so extensive we got lost in them, we went to a pizzeria for lunch. They sold their pizza by the weight. Our two slices were covered with nicely charred mozzarella. One had zucchini on it and the other had mushrooms and sausages. Neither had tomatoes. The crust was thin, oily, and crunchy. The pizza wasn't especially good for Italy nor was it especially fresh. Nevertheless, it's probably better than any pizza you could find in Hungary. The vegetables in particular were delicious.

A mosaic in Ostia Antica

A mosaic in Ostia Antica

We spent the rest of the afternoon at the beach. The neighborhood didn't have many restaurants, but we found one that looked nice whose specialty was water buffalo. All the meat on the menu was water buffalo; all the dairy came from water buffalo milk, including the ice cream. The stewed buffalo meat was lean but still tender, with a flavor like beef but stronger. Apparently Hungarians like it too, though I never saw it available there at any butchers or restaurants.

When I looked up the address of Fratelli la Bufala, I discovered it's a big chain that even has a location in Miami. See, even chains are good in Italy!

Fratelli la Bufala
Via delle Antille, 41
00121 Rome

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