WSGT’s next Travel Influencer Interview has a focus on Italy as Eric and Amber from With Husband in Tow have been traveling to Italy for over 15 years. Their blog provides a road map on what and where to eat for people who travel on their stomachs. In the spring of 2017, Amber will be publishing her first culinary travel guide The Food Traveler’s Guide to Italy: Emilia Romagna, which will be available on Amazon.
1.)What was it about Italy that made you think- WOW this is an amazing country?
We’ve felt this way about Italy ever since our first trip in 1999. However, it wasn’t until we started exploring Emilia Romagna that we, correction, our stomachs really went WOW!!! Whether it’s been fresh, hand-made pasta, cured meats, gelato, or wine, the food culture of Emilia Romagna continues to impress us.
2.)What do you wish more people knew about Italy?
That there is much more to see than Rome, Venice, and Tuscany. Our favorite region to explore, without a doubt, is Emilia Romagna. Bordering Tuscany and only two hours south of Milan, it is the home to many of the quintessential Italian foods and ingredients we know and love including balsamic vinegar and Parmigiano Reggiano. Emilia Romagna’s latest claim to fame is that the #1 restaurant in the world, Osteria Francescana, can be found in Modena. Good luck getting a reservation, though.
3.)Is there something you found difficult at first but overcame it during your travels in Italy?
In the 15+ years we’ve been traveling to Italy, I don’t think we’ve overcome this yet, because every time we are in Italy we make the same mistake when we try to plan what and where to eat on Sunday. We know that the local food markets are closed and that supermarkets have limited hours. But we always say, “let’s go over to the market and pick something up” only to be greatly disappointed to see locked doors. The same holds true with eating out. We know that many restaurants choose Sunday as the one day they close, or shorten the hours they are open. We know we need to plan a few days in advance to better understand which of the best restaurants are open on Sunday.
4.)What apps do you use regularly that make your life easier?
XE.com Even after five years of travel, we still can’t keep track of exchange rates.
SeatGuru We use SeatGuru religiously to pick the best seats on almost any flight. It’s how we avoid sitting in a row without a window, or too close to the lavatory. Don’t fly anywhere without it.
Google Flights Another great airline travel tool we can’t live without. We always book our flights direct with the airline, but Google Flights is great to research tool.
5.)What inspired you to travel for extended periods of time in Italy?
The easy answer is the food. It’s so good, so plentiful, and the main reason we travel to Italy. But what inspires us to travel for extended periods of time in Italy are the people behind the food. Building contractors who make award-winning wine as a hobby. The 4th or 5th generation producer of prosciutto or balsamic vinegar who worry about who’s going to be the next generation to carry on the traditions. The cooks. From nonnas, or Italian grandmothers, to Michelin Star chefs, and everyone in between, each has a passion for preparing the best. We don’t speak much Italian, but the expressions on the faces of the people we have met in our travels tell it all.
Amber is a recovering attorney and professional eater who travels the world in search of great eats, with husband in tow. She and Eric have been on the road for over four years now, exploring primarily Europe and Asia, from Michelin Star restaurants to cheap street eats. Their blog provides a road map on what and where to eat for people who travel on their stomachs. In the spring of 2017, she will be publishing her first culinary travel guide The Food Traveler’s Guide to Italy: Emilia Romagna, which will be available on Amazon soon.
Stay up-to-date with Amber and Eric through their:
Our next Travel Influencer interview will be up in a week, follow the series here.