I’ve spent the past ten days on the Italian island of Sardinia. The weather was unseasonably cold when I arrived – the hotel turned the heaters in the rooms on which is basically unheard of in Sardinia at the end of May. Luckily things turned around and the weather has gone from the 50s to the 80s. I am loving it here.
I spent last week on a press trip with Uncommon Flavors of Europe learning about Pecorino Romano, a cheese that I’ve loved for years. I started cooking with it back when I was in college.
At first, I was confused about why the trip would be taking place in Sardinia, but I quickly researched and learned that the name Pecorino Romano refers to the Roman Empire not the city of Rome. Today 96% of Pecorino Romano is produced in Sardinia.
We spent the week visiting sheep farms where we got to run around fields with sheep, visiting cheese making facilities, and seeing some ancient historic sites, but our primary activity was eating.
Each lunch and dinner was a feast! A highlight was a cooking demo at a restaurant called The Hub in Macomer where Chef Leonardo showed us how to make the perfect cacio e pepe. I’m excited to make it myself soon.
Our trip was based in the very small town of Macomer but we spent our days all over the central part of the island. Sardinia is larger and more mountainous than you might expect. Even places that look close tend to be a long drive because mountains get in the way. I did make it to Bosa twice, which is a seaside town less than an hour from Macomer.
When I was planning my trip around the world and I decided to work the press trip into the itinerary, I thought it would be best to spend some extra time on the island. An island off the coast of Italy in June just sounded dreamy, and it is.
After Macomer I went to Olbia on the northern coast. I spent three days completely relaxing and enjoying the beaches.
I went to the beach that the locals call “the Bahamas of Sardinia”. The water was clear and shallow and the beach is located in a cove so there were no waves. It was so peaceful.
The following day I went to Pittulongu Beach, which is closed to Olbia. The thing that I love about the beaches here is that they have little beach clubs/restaurants. I was able to rent a chair and an umbrella, order lunch and a glass of rosé, and use a real bathroom at the little beach club. It’s so lovely! And affordable, it reminded me of when Kelly and I went to the beach in Cannes last summer.
Then I headed south to Cagliari. The window to my airbnb is beside the “ORAFO” sign in this photo. Yesterday was laundry day. I planned this trip around doing laundry every ten days. My airbnb in Cagliari has a washing machine and a clothesline. I had to hang my clothing out the window to let it dry in the sun. Luckily it’s warm and not like when I studied abroad in Florence and had to wait four days for a pair of jeans to dry! I only dropped one sock onto the street while was hanging my clothing to dry.
Today I’ll be going on a boat ride and maybe even seeing the dolphins that can be found in the area. I’m in Cagliari for a few more days before I go to Florence. I studied art history in Florence 15 years ago and the city holds a special place in my heart. I know that I won’t want to leave!