Entries tagged with “Italy”.


 I am about to leave my second home, Apricus Locanda in the village of Apricale in Italy, close to the French border. I have spent the last thirteen days here, writing SwitchBitch Book 2 here, and recovering from walking the Camino in Northern Spain for three weeks. 

Despite having had the most unbelievable obstacles put in my way by airlines Emirates and Iberia to finally get to Apricale, via train to Ventimiglia, last year and this year, respectively, there is no friendlier and more perfect location for me to have written my first two SwitchBitch books.  (more…)

Last Friday I shared a 7-course dinner at Pierino Penati, at Villa 47, sister restaurant to the one-star Michelin restaurant with the same name operating outside Milan in Italy, as a guest of Dine4Six. I have eaten at Pierino Penati, the best restaurant in Cape Town, previously, and have found it to be the best restaurant in the city. (more…)

Episode 4 of the JAN viaTV series was focused on Apricale, and foraging in the area, both for wild-growing flowers and herbs, as well as for truffles. It was special to see Jeanette van Manen, owner of the Apricus Locanda, at which I stayed in August whilst writing The Book. (more…)


I have made a decision to stop supporting and attending WineMag events after having been called to a meeting with Christian Eedes, editor of WineMag, and his business partner Jax Lahoud. I was badly disrespected by fellow-writer Eedes, and I will not stand for bullying of any kind. (more…)

A three-week writing focus at Apricale in Italy saw me complete the writing of a book within the time period I had allocated to this first-ever writing challenge. As the catalyst for The Book was Chef Jan-Hendrik van der Westhuizen, in that I met a special man at his book launch in March last year, and that The Book tells the story of the transformational effect of the meeting, there was no better restaurant to eat at on Saturday, to celebrate the completion of The Book, than at JAN Restaurant in Nice! It felt like Christmas, it being exciting to experience JAN Restaurant again, my third visit in two years!  (more…)

Last night I ate dinner with Babs Valente and her mother and stepdad at Apricus Osteria & Bar in Apricale, known as the most beautiful village in Italy. I had met Chef Babs in the village two days prior, and recognized her South African accent, despite her now living near Boston, when not visiting her mother in Italy. (more…)

Yesterday evening I ventured up the steep lane to the square in the village in which I am living in Liguria province, celebrating not only the Catholic religious holiday of Ferragosto, the Assumption of the Virgin Mary, but also a successful first two days of writing my book.  (more…)

By the time I post this Blogpost, I will probably be sitting at the airport in Dubai, on my way to Italy, to write my first book, and hopefully not the last!  (more…)

Leeu Collection hospitality group has announced its partnership with Chef Ritu Dalmia, a restaurateur from Delhi, where she owns Italian restaurant Diva.  Chef Ritu will look after all international restaurant interests of the Leeu Collection, excluding its South African restaurants. The appointment of Chef Ritu reflects the focus of Leeu Collection on Hospitality acquisitions in South Africa, Italy, and the U.K..  (more…)

I requested a list of suggestions for pâtisseries to visit whilst in Paris from Chef Glen Williams of Foxcroft, who had visited Paris for a week last year. His top recommendation out of a list of about ten pâtisseries was L’Éclair de Génie. (more…)