1) We started our vacation by visiting a new-to-us restaurant in Sarasota- Caraguilos Italian American in downtown Sarasota. It's a casual Italian, family-owned restaurant and we loved it! The food was fantastic, we had a great bottle of wine, and my dish of Fazoletti & Short Rib Ragu was amazing. The short rib was so tender, and the carrots and mushrooms were cooked to perfection. I can see why it s one of their most popular dishes on the menu. Our server Julie was top-notch, and one of the owners, Rob Caraguilo, came over and we had a nice chat. We'll definitely be coming back for the Buy One Pizza, Get a Second for 31cents night on Tuesdays during the off-season.
|Fazoletti & Short Rib Ragu|
2) We made a quick stop at the University Mall and saw this Lamborghini at the valet parking- with a baby seat in the passenger seat. That made us laugh.
3) When we were in Italy, we ordered a ceramic table from a craftsman for our lanai in Florida and we finally got to use it this time. It's so cheery and bright and reminds of our fabulous trip to Ravello.
4) We also caught up on some entertainment- we went to an actual movie theater and saw Richard Jewell, which was really good. The performances by Sam Rockwell, Kathy Bates and Paul Walter Hauser as Richard Jewell were fantastic. Richard Jewell is based on the true story of a security guard at the Atlanta Olympics in 1986 who saves many people when a bomb goes off, only to find himself the target of the FBI investigation.
We also watched Chernobyl on HBO, a miniseries based on the nuclear explosion there in 1986 and the coverup by the Russian government. It's a gripping drama.
To continue with our theme of based on true events, we watched The Two Popes on Netflix. Jonathan Pryce is outstanding as Pope Francis and Anthony Hopkins is equally terrific as Pope Benedict. You get a real sense of both of these men, I highly recommend it. Both men are talked about as Oscar contenders for their performances.
5) I got a lot of reading in this week. Beatriz Williams, Lauren Willig and Karen Whites's third collaboration, All The Ways We Said Goodbye (which publishes January 14th) is their best one yet. With three times settings- WWI, WWII and 1964, they seamlessly tell the story of three women and how they are connected through the years and what secrets are revealed through their connection to the Ritz Hotel in Paris. I love that the story contains characters from their two previous collaborations- The Forgotten Room and The Glass Ocean. A complete review will follow soon.
Kiley Reid's debut novel Such a Fun Age is Reese Witherspoon's Hello Sunshine Book Club pick and it's a great choice. It begins with a young black woman who takes the young white girl she babysits for to a grocery store late at night and is accused by a security guard of kidnapping the child. It's a thought-provoking book about race and privilege and class and it's very good.
Since I went to Italy over the summer, Alexander McCall Smith's My Italian Bulldozer, about a food and wine writer who travels to Tuscany after his girlfriend leaves him, was a good read for me. It's a lovely book and if you have ever visited Tuscany, you'll love it.
I hope you had a wonderful holiday season and that 2020 holds great things in store for you.
I thought at first that you were in Italy again! What a lovely holiday you had.ReplyDelete