Hagia Sophia

Hagis Sophia

Hagia Sophia has been in the news as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan reconverted this magnificent Byzantine structure into a place for Muslim worshipers for the first time in nearly nine decades. The Hagia Sophia has undergone several changes in its history. A Byzantine emperor, Justinian I, originally built it in the 6th century as the [Read more …]

Tre Bicchieri and the Top Wines of Italy


Every year, the Italian food and wine magazine Gambero Rosso sponsors a tasting tour of Italian wines that win the organization’s prestigious Tre Bicchieri (“three glass”) designation. Gamberao Rosso’s panel of experts award this rating to only about one percent of the 45,000 wines tasted. Producers who win these designations are permitted to showcase these [Read more …]

Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux 2017 Wine


Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux is a group of 134 top wine-producing Châteaux from a number of Bordeaux’s most prized appellations. The group sponsors a number of wine tastings that provide an opportunity to sample wines from the region’s newly released vintages. The January 2020 San Francisco Event focused on 2017 and 2018 wines [Read more …]

Benevento Brunello


Montalcino is a pretty medieval town in Italy’s Sienna providence. This area is the warmest and driest of Tuscan wine-growing regions. It is mostly known for Brunello wines, and is normally associated with high-quality Brunello di Montalcino wines. Montalcino winemaking started with Moscadello white Muscat wine production. In the early 14th century, Brunello red wines [Read more …]

Amsterdam Restaurants


Amsterdam has many good restaurants. During our 5 night stay, we checked out many of them thanks to the recommendations of our concierge at the W Hotel. But as restaurants may come and go, we suggest that you check with your hotel concierge for the places that best suit your tastes. Restaurant Daalder Restaurant Daalder [Read more …]

Amsterdam Museums

Amsterdam Rijks Museum

Amsterdam has literally hundreds of museums. We had time to visit only five. You can find another perspective of Amsterdam museums on some previous blogs written by a guest contributor who spent a month in Amsterdam. Rijks Museum The Rijks Museum is Amsterdam and The Netherlands’s most important museum. It has a huge collection that [Read more …]

Exploring Amsterdam


Amsterdam has a lot f of interesting areas to explore. Here are some of them. Amsterdam’s Old Town Amsterdam’s old town is the city’s most historic and one of the most interesting sections. It contains the city’s oldest existing building (Old Church), one of the city’s “hidden churches” and a number of less gentile sites, [Read more …]

Amsterdam’s Red Light District

Amsterdam Red Light District designer condoms for fun

Prostitution is alive throughout the world. In the past, women had few opportunities to earn money. Port cities, where ships docked after being at sea for two or three years, drew women who were willing to trade their bodies for money. Today, many large port cities still have large prostitution populations. Although the world’s oldest [Read more …]

Amsterdam Dam Square Area

Amsterdam National Monument

Amsterdam is the capital of The Netherlands. It restored much of its city’s historic district after the war and became a UNESCO World Heritage Site. One can explore the city in many ways including cars/taxis, public transportation, bikes, or the old fashion way….walking. There is so much to see in the city. This blog talks [Read more …]

Amsterdam History

Amsterdam - moored boats

Amsterdam is Netherlands’ capital. It is also a favorite tourist destination with its iconic canals. While there are many beautiful sights and things to do, it is helpful to understand Amsterdam’s history. If you don’t like history, skip directly to our other Amsterdam blogs. Amsterdam’s Start Amsterdam began as a small fishing village in the [Read more …]