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All Roads Should Lead to this Cake Store in Rome March 22, 2009

Posted by pacejmiller in Food, Travel.
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Update: pictures added!

Today marked the end of the Italian leg of our 1st anniversary vacation (actually, today is our anniversary!) – and we are now in Switzerland, at the home town of Roger Federer, Basel.  It just happened to be the last night of some crazy festival and so when we wandered out into the city streets we were deafened by the sound of thumping drums and ear-piercing trumpets and flutes and a whole bunch of instruments I couldn’t name.  People were just about everywhere and in every street, pacing up and down in small groups to parade-like masses.  It was fun, eye-opening and kinda scary all at the same time.

Anyway, since my last post, we had completed our adventures in Italy.  Rome and Vatican City had been at the top of my travel destinations list forever, and I can finally cross them off after being wowed by just about everything I had seen over the last 3 days or so.  For those interested in exactly what I got up to, please wait until I’ve had the time to update the Travel Diary section.  I would also really like to post some pictures up in these posts and the Travel Diary to give everything a more realistic feel, but it’s hard to find time on a trip like this!

However, I just wanted to give a little plug to this little cake store my wife and I stumbled across when were in Rome and went to visit the Colosseum.  It was one of those ‘blink and you’ll miss it ‘ type of places, but the cakes and chocolates there were absolutely divine.  If you happen to be around the Colosseum, do yourself a favour and check it out!

For those that haven’t been to Rome before, there are pizza shops and gelato bars on almost every street corner of the tourist disticts.  There are also plenty of patisseries that sell bread and tarts (especially ones with nuts).  But you’d be hard pressed to find a shop that dedicates itself purely to delicately designed cakes, the ones you common to Paris or Tokyo, where you can enjoy an afternoon snack with a cup of coffee or after a flavoursome meal.

Cristalli Di Zucchero in Rome

Cristalli Di Zucchero in Rome

Anyway, the place is called Cristalli Di Zucchero, and it has a one page website here with address details (turns out it’s a different address to the one we went to).  Basically, if you walk past the Colosseum (through Arco di Constantino) and head South all the way along Via di S. Gregorino, then curl around the outside of the walled archaeological site (Palatino or Palantine Hill) and head West along Via de Cerchi until you reach the South West corner of the site.  The store, which has no signs outside (basically just a hole in the wall) is just across from this little cathedral hidden inside the wall on Via di San Teodoro, just as you turn the South West corner and before you reach Arco di Giano.

We were actually looking for a toilet, and the shopkeeper was nice enough to let us use their one.  We returned the favour by purchasing 3 cakes.  The highlight was this unassuming one we were recommended called Williams (white dome with chocolate streaks on top), and it was sensational.

Okay, more on this and pizza in my next post…and maybe a bit on my visit to the Vatican too.

PS: I’m still trying to complete my review of Stephen King’s On Writing (which I finally finished) and update my Travel Diary for the Rome and Vatican City.




'Williams' was sensational

'Williams' was sensational

Update: Italian Adventure and Writing March 19, 2009

Posted by pacejmiller in Novel, On Writing, Travel.
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This has been the longest gap between posts since I started this blog in mid-January.  There’s a good reason.  I’m on a mind-blowing 3-week adventure through Italy, Switzerland and Germany, plus visits to Prague and Vienna – and Internet access has not been easy (well, at least not free, and I’m low on cash).

Anyway, so far, so excellent.  I’m going to try and update my Travel Diary regularly so as to not lag behind too much.  Check out the first part of my adventure from Pisa to Florence to Venice!

I haven’t totally forgot about my novel writing either (I brought my laptop on the trip).  One thing about travelling predominantly by train in Europe is an abundance of train rides, from as short as an hour to as long as five (I believe from Freiburg to Munich is the longest).  This means plenty of time to read and write.  I’ve also got Stephen King’s brilliant On Writing stored on my iPod, which I’ve been listening to.  It’s my first audio book and I’m really enjoying listening to Stephen King’s voice (though it did take a little getting used to).  Full review coming when I finish.

I had been in a semi-slump lately with the fantasy novel.  Words were written and the story was progressing but I wasn’t happy with what was on the screen.  As it turned out, this trip and Stephen King were exactly what I needed to get my mojo back.  I’m glad to say I am back on track and loving working on the novel more than ever.  Hopefully it will last even after I return home.

PS: And no, I didn’t bring any study materials or textbooks with me.  I’m pathetic but not THAT pathetic.

[PPS: Travel Diary has now been updated!]

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