Summery Lunch at La Vita è Bella, Como

 

La Vita è Bella is a restaurant where you can enjoy a real Italian atmosphere. You can find it in the middle of Como’s city centre next to the lake. It’s a great spot to have a delicious and healthy meal but still enjoy a true Italy. 

What to have

 

The menu here is amazing. Not only do they make some delicious traditional Italian food – the type of food you can only eat in Italy, its an experience in itself. But they also have the biggest selection of salads, which for a vegan lover is a dream!

One of my favourite salads is the ‘Insalata di Arance‘ (€8.50/£7.50), which consists of fennel, orange, rucola and toasted almonds finished off with a vinaigrette. This salad is crunchy, fruity and extremely refreshing. Perfect on a warm summer day!

Another one of my favourite salads is called ‘L’orientale‘ (€9/£7.90). This plate consists of a green salad mix with couscous, green beans, peppers, onion and mango croutons finished off with an amazing vinaigrette on top! The amazing thing is that they might have over 50 different salads on the menu, but you can still tweak your own. I am personally in love with avocado so I love to add it to my salads. Maybe you have a passion for fruit or fresh tomatoes, just ask and they will prepare it for you!

After lunch or dinner you of course have to finish your meal Italian style, it’s espresso time! If you aren’t a coffee lover it’s in Italy where you will learn to drink it! An espresso is almost like a digestive and I think it’s the perfect end to a dinner.

 

 

Where to go

 

La Vita è Bella is open everyday for lunch at 12:00–16:00 and for dinner at 19:00–23:00. Their address is Piazza Domenico Croggi 4 in Como. 

 

 

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The Best Neapolitan Pizza in Como

 

I’m totally in love with Italy so it’s no wonder I found myself an Italian boyfriend! I always had a strong connection with the country of passion, love and food. But of course since I actually fell in love with a guy there my connection just became stronger and I now like to visit as often as I can!

I have been spending lots of time in Como and I thought that it wouldn’t be a bad idea to find out where you can have the best vegan pizza in town! Lots of pizza’s and glasses of wine later and I have finally found the perfect spot!

 

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Often the less prettier and old fashion restaurants is where you can eat the best food. One of those places just like that is Pizzeria Da Benito. This pizzeria is hidden away in a small street 5 minutes walking from the centre. When the sun is shining you can sit outside and enjoy a cold glass of wine while you wait for the ultimate pizza.

 

What I love

 

Pizzeria Da Benito makes the best pizza marinara, an ultimate classic.  This pizza has a crispy crust, as you take a bite you can hear the crust break and white flower dust remains on your fingers. The tomato sauce is so rich, you can taste the freshness of each ingredient. And even though there is lots of sauce the bread remains crispy. It has the perfect balance of textures and flavours. You can truly taste the classic Italian flavours that will remind any Italian of their grandmothers food. It’s honest, and purely delicious.

What’s also amazing is the fact that they offer a choice of pizza dough. Instead of normal white dough you can also have a wholegrain, multigrain or kamut base. Making your pizza extra healthy! Healthy, fresh and absolutely delicious! Doesn’t this just sound like a dream?!

 

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Where to go

 

Pizzeria Da Benito is open everyday from 12–3PM, 6:30PM–12AM and their address is Via Briantea 29 in Como.

 

All images shot with my beautiful Leica Q

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5x Vegan Hotspots in Como, Italy

 

When you think of Italy you think of passion, pasta, the movie Eat Pray Love, espresso’s and of course gelato, lots and lots of gelato. You might think that it’s hard being vegan in Italy. But let me tell you, although I might get an occasional look from an old italian lady when I ask for soya milk in my coffee, it’s actually not hard at all. I fell in love with Como a long time ago and have discovered lots of amazing places over time where you can enjoy some amazing vegan food. These are a few of the hot spots that you have to check out when you next visit this beautiful town.

 

Ice cream

Let’s start with my obsession first, ice cream! My favorite spot for ice cream is hidden in one of the tiny streets on the lake called ‘Vanilla Bio’.

Vanilla Biois a small shop in which they only sell organic and vegan ice cream. All flavours are freshly homemade and absolutely delicious. It fulfills all your Italian gelato dreams and you won’t even feel guilty afterwards! Imagine a crispy cone with their best flavours, Coconut and Chocolate. So creamy, so flavourful and as they are based with coconut milk they don’t taste like a sorbet but actually like full creamy ice cream.

 

Pizza

There are many great spots to find a delicious pizza in Como, after all its Italy. However, it’s usually at the less beautiful places that you can find the best authentic food. One of those places which also happens to be my favorite spot is called ‘Pizzeria Da Benito.

Pizzeria Da Benito has the best vegan Neapolitan pizza. I always order the Marinara which is an ultimate classic. The pizza has a crispy crust, as you take a bite you can hear the crust break and white flower dust remains on your fingers. The tomato sauce is so rich, you can taste the freshness of each ingredient. And even though there is lots of sauce the bread remains crispy. It has the perfect balance of textures and flavours. For me this is THE spot for the ultimate pizza.

 

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Coffee

Como is beautiful and within it’s cosy streets you will find lots of amazing cafes. However, these are a few of my favourites. ‘Posta is a cafe which belongs to the hotel ‘Pasta Design Hotel‘ which is located in one of the main squares. It has a lovely terrace where you will overlook the square so you can sit down, enjoy the most amazing coffee and do some people watching.

My second favourite spot is called ‘Loft. If you want to enjoy a coffee with a view then this is THE place to go to. It has the most beautiful view overlooking the houses with the mountains in the background on one side and with a view over the church on the other. You can hear the church bells in the background as you sit in the sun enjoying the Italian lifestyle.
If you are looking for a very Italian type of cafe then you have to visit ‘Pane e Tulipani’. This cafe sells the most amazing espresso as well as beautiful flowers – it’s both a cafe and flower shop. It’s hidden in one of the small streets where you can sit outside on the terrace and watch people go by as you enjoy your espresso in the sun.

 

 

 

All images shot with my beautiful Leica Q

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The best vegan ice-cream on the lake in Como, Italy.

 

When you’re in Italy you can expect to be finding yourself stuffing your face with ice-cream, lets be honest here. My diet has consisted of espresso’s, pasta and ice-cream in the last few days and apart from going for that extra run I feel great! Being vegan in Italy has always been seen as a very difficult task. But that’s not always true. I have been going to Italy for quite a while and have found some amazing Italian meals that even I can order in a restaurant or cafe. Nevertheless, I have recently discovered an ice salon which is now one of my favourite spots in Como.

 

What I like

In a small side street you will find a spot named Vanilla BioVanilla Bio is an ice salon which only sells vegan and bio ice-cream. Two bubbly girls make you try all the flavours you want and make you even more indecisive as everything you taste is as good as the other. However, if you want to dulge in delight you have to try two of my favourite  flavours, ‘coconut’ and ‘chocolate’. They are both vegan and absolutely delicious. Imagine a crispy cone with the most creamiest and flavoursome ice-cream, all plant based.

When you visit Como you can’t miss out on this spot, and trust me you wont be returning just once.

 

Where to go

They are open everyday and the address is Via fontana 15 in Como, Italy.
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All images shot with my beautiful Leica Q

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From London to Milan

Early mornings need many early coffee’s and yesterday was definitely one of those early mornings! With the suitcases in our hand we stroll around Fulham Road towards a little cafe named Muni. I will be forever in love with their coffee! If you have read my article about this amazing little cafe you will definitely understand why!

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Muni Cafe , Fulham Road.

While taking the last sip of my coffee we stood up and got ourselves together to make our way to the airport. My next coffee was going to be in the country where espresso’s are a way of life, a holy grail that everyone gets a taste of every single day. Soon I would be drinking my coffee while overlooking the lake of Como and Lugano!

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As the doors of the plane open you could feel the warmth on your skin. The air is tight and hot, how I have missed those summer nights. I’m glad to be spending my next few days breathing in the warm air, diving into the cold lake. Feeling the hot sun burn on your skin while eating the best home-made ice-cream in a small street next to the lake overlooking the boats as they go past.

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Como is definitely a place to visit when you are in love with Italy as much as I am. It has the prettiest roads to get lost in. The best ice-cream places scattered all over the place. The most beautiful views as you eat your fresh pasta and finish with a delicious coffee. You can feel the vibe, the atmosphere is relaxed and flowing. The heat keeps everyone mellow. The coffee keeps everyone busy. The food keeps everyone happy. And the views keeps everyone smiling. Especially compared to London, I feel that people here live a much happier life. – But lets be honest, how could you not be happy here! London is beautiful don’t get me wrong, but people end up living a much more stressful life. (Even I got caught up in the lifestyle) When was the last time you didn’t had to risk your life by crossing the street? When was the last time you sat down with a pasta and a glass of wine and really, but really tasted every single bite and took your time to enjoy the flavours? In Italy you almost get pressured by the waiter to talk about how good your food really was, and if you didn’t finish your plate they ask “why?”, “did you not like it?”, “ARE YOU OK?” People really live in the moment. And I believe that this is extremely important in life. That is when you are at our happiest.

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So for the next few days I will be exploring the different roads, the lakes, the cafes, everything that makes a true Italian happy. – And what will probably make me so happy that I will end up staying here. ( I could fit right in right? Blue eyes, caramel skin, dark hair, not too tall of length.. let me just put on my lace navy Dolce & Gabbana dress while I sip on my espresso and ill just secretly blend in..) Allora.. ciao tutti, a domani! Tanti Bacci!

Coffee, Ice cream and views

So what is the first thing you think of when you open your eyes in the morning? Exactly, COFFEE! Especially being in Italy this is the highlight of the day! – For a coffee freak like me at least. Wondering the streets in Como using your sense of smell as a guide. The smell of fresh croissants and coffee are leading you in. You walk in a small cafe as you cannot longer control yourself and now have a sense of desperation in your voice while ordering your croissant. Your first bite, warm and crispy. Your first sip, hot, smooth, first bitter but then sweet. Perfect, perfect is the only word to describe such flavours.

Are you a breakfast freak to? Go to Como. As we know Italian food is the most comforting, flavoursome and authentic cuisine with recipes going back generations. Untouched and beautiful. Much like it’s architecture. The beautiful roads and buildings, and although you will get lost in all the small streets you will get stunned by the beauty of each one of them.

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Don’t even get me started on the ice-cream. What is a better way to enjoy the sun and the view by getting the most amazing ice-cream. It does not matter where you go in Italy to get yourself a good ice-cream, but keep your eyes out for the small authentic corner shops. Those are usually the best as there is a large chance they make their ice-cream themselves. If you are lucky it will be a family recipe, grandmothers ice-cream. If so, you have just won the lottery! Dig in to the most delicious ice-cream you have ever had!

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After an amazing weekend spend in the most amazing places with the most amazing people we flew back to London. When flying from Milan to London the view is always breathtaking. Make sure to always keep your face pressed against the window when approaching or leaving Milan airport, trust me, it’s worth it.

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