Is there anywhere more romantic in the world than Positano, Italy? It’s like stepping into a dream, only to realize it’s not a dream at all. It’s real. This was my fourth time to the Amalfi Coast but the first time I’ve ever been during the final week of the season. Wow, what a difference. No cruisers, tour groups or sweltering temperatures, and the shops were having their last big sales on linen and caftans. SCORE! We stayed at Villa Rosa, a boutique-style hotel across from the famous Le Sirenuse. It was absolutely wonderful. If you ever visit, ask for Room 38 at the very top of the villa. It had the most breathtaking views, worth every bit of the 100 stairs we climbed each day to get to it. What made this trip even more perfect were the locals that we encountered around town.
One night we met Nicodemo, the owner of Wine Dark House, a favorite restaurant for Positanese. We sat around the dinner table with him in a tiny piazza below the Chiesa di Santa Maria Assunta. He generously poured his private collection of aged Aglianico as we savored his wife’s locally-sourced cooking late into the night, that is, until Djole and Nico heard cheers from the nearby bar and ran off with glasses of wine in hand to check the score of the Serie A soccer game. Napoli had taken the lead. As I sat alone under the twinkling lights of Positano, I smiled and poured myself a bit more vino. It was a very good night, indeed.