One Day in Calcata, Italy

Last week I had the opportunity to pose Eight Questions for author David Farley just as his first book, An Irreverent Curiosity: In Search of the Church's Strangest Relic in Italy's Oddest Town, made its debut.  I asked Farley about how he would spend just one day in Calcata, Italy, the town where his book takes place.  This was his response...

AKN: If you only had one day to spend in Calcata, what would you do and clearly, where would you eat?

It would be a Saturday or Sunday because that’s the most lively day in Calcata. I would start off with a walk down in the valley below which is etched with footpaths and littered with tombs from the Faliscans, a pre-Christian people who inhabited the area but were wiped out by the Romans. Then I would have lunch at my friend Pancho’s restaurant, La Grotta dei Germogli, an eatery fashioned out of a cave and one of my favorite spots in the village. I’d hope my friend Paul Steffen—an 87-year-old American who at one time was very famous in Italy for being a dancer and choreographer—would be dining with me (we had lunch there every Saturday and Sunday). Afterward, I’d sit on the square for a while, perhaps do some reading. For dinner I’d eat at Tugurio, a phenomenal place in Calcata. I’d go for a primo (hopefully the carbonara would be on the menu) and a secondo (the rosemary-encrusted pork chop is buonissimo). Then I’d head back to the Grotta for a limoncello and chat with Pancho some more. A perfect day in Calcata.

If you want to have a perfect day in Calcata, I've placed all of the spots Farley recommends on this map...

View David Farley's One Day in Calcata in a larger map

David Farley also wrote about a day trip to Calcata for the New York Times.  Click the link to read his article: Calcata, Italy: Where Newcomers Give an Old Town a Second Life.

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Anthony Doerr's One Day in Rome

On Monday I interviewed Anthony Doerr, author of Four Seasons in Rome .  Here's part of our exchange:
AKN:  If you only had one day to spend in Rome, what would you do? More importantly: where would you eat?
AD:  We'd have a cappuccino at Sant'Eustachio (Piazza Sant'Eustachio 82) and then we'd sit for a long time in the Campo dei Fiori and watch people. Then I'd go to Sant’ Ivo alla Sapienza, a astounding white church by Borromini. Maybe there'd even be a choir singing in there. Then I'd walk around the Colosseum and back all the way up through Trastevere deep into Monteverde to a restaurant called il Cortile, on via Pisacane. The antipasto table is there is where antipasto goes when it goes to heaven: frittate, seafood, asparagus, these incredible mushrooms. I'd get some pasta, Shauna would order the pollo al diavolo, a smashed and salted chicken half, and we'd nurse our tired feet and eat antipasto forever.
Interested in replicating Doerr's One Day in Rome?  Well, here's a map!  
You can read my entire interview with Anthony Doerr here .

On a related note...
Over the weekend Matt Gross, the New York Times' Frugal Traveler , blogged about traveling to Venice with children on the cheap:  "Frugal Venice, Family Style."  He, too, writes about the love Italians have for children.  Enjoy!