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Winery Sage: Visiting Venice, Italy

The first day in Venice, we just walked around all day and got a feel for the city. There are over 400 bridges, each linking what was once an island to the next island. The Venetians slowly filled in the gaps between the islands so that only the canals remained.

We split up for lunch because Justin and Allison saw an open face sandwich that looked really good to them but, Karen, Danny and Ken ate across the small road at a general Italian restaurant. An ongoing theme of our Venice meals was Danny trying to order seafood risotto but all the restaurants only made it for two people due to the effort. Instead, the fish special looked good to him even though it was for two people (Danny likes to work out and as a consequence can eat for two).


Enter gullible tourist sucker practice number two: always ask the price of the special. In the U.S., you are usually safe about not being gouged. Apparently, not in Venice. Karen and Ken’s meals were pretty reasonable but, after checking the bill, imagine the surprise when it included a charge for 86 Euro for the fish special.

Do you know how many glasses of wine we could have in Italy for 86 Euro?

Sure, it was a good special but for that, the damn fish should have been able to produce gold bricks for us. Clearly it was prepared by an Italian masterchef, flown in especially from Rome on a chartered jet with a military escort just to prepare Danny’s fish. Who knew we were that special? Well, lesson learned but, damn — that was painful. A great pasta meal for diner followed (our first of many I assume), but Ken now knows just how pathetic his homemade ragu meat sauce is compared to the real stuff.  Damn… this trip is going to be tough on the ego.

The next day we had a four-hour tour with an American who has lived in Venice for 20-plus years who can give you more of the insiders scoop on how the city works and some of its history. It was pretty good. We had no plans for the rest of the day, so we found a small local bar and proceeded to watch a never-ending slew of overpriced gondoliers rowing their customers (perhaps victims is a better word, considering a gondola ride costs 80 Euro for 30 minutes).

Read the rest of the article here:

Venice – Our First Italian Stop

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Winery-Sage is an online Winery Encyclopedia designed to help you compare wines, wineries, and regions by using a unique database. Cross-reference varietals and the wineries that produce them, as well as discover events sponsored by wineries and associations. We’re not here to sell you anything or pass you off to paid advertisers, just share the love for wine. Discover the world of wine at

About Karen and Ken Geiszler:

Here you can find information on bloggers bios and how the web site came to be. Ken – Brief Bio I am somewhere approaching middle age (which is everyone’s way of saying older than I want to be but I’m not dead yet). Isn’t it ironic that when some one claims to be middle aged, that would typically mean they plan on living to be 110? I can claim to be in my 40’s as long as the blog post gets published relatively quickly. I was born and raised in Northern California, and developed a passion for wine in my late 30s. I am married to Karen, the other principal in KG Web Publications, the partnership that publishes Our last name starts with “G”, hence the name “KG “ works for both of us – no top billing. Marriage is all about compromises. When/if things slow down at work, I would like to get my certificate as a certified wine professional. Karen – Brief Bio Karen is slightly older than Ken (a point that never gets old – not hard to tell which of us wrote the biographies, is it?). She was born in Southern California but moved to Northern California in the mid 80’s. Ken claims it’s because she was looking for him. She ignores him, something at which she has become quite adept. She was a retail manager for a number of years and continued to work through our older child’s school years but became a stay at home mom for the 2nd one. To avoid going nuts, she volunteered at both kid’s schools. Now that the younger one has moved on to college and doesn’t want his parents within a three hour drive of the place, she has moved onto administering the web site and allowing the 90 pound Black Lab to take her for walks. She graciously allows Ken to think that they have compromised on a number of things even though she’s usually had the end game figured out from the beginning. Joint Bio (Updated in late 2017) Karen and Ken have now been married for almost 25 years and to date have still not had a fight since being married, probably because Karen has the patience of a saint. They live in the Silicon Valley area but have had a cabin just south of Yosemite (in the Bass lake area) for roughly 13 years and spend as much time up there as they can. The first 10 years was just relaxation. The last three has been lots of work recovering from damage caused by the Courtney Fire and then continuing on with a remodel. In 2018, they hope to spend as much as a third of their time up at the cabin. They are now empty-nesters with with older soon being married and living in London with his new wife for the next two years and the younger one living in Ann Arbor, Michigan, getting his PHD in Bioinformatics. From where he got the brains is a complete mystery but the best guess is the dog. They are not sure what they did to drive their kids so far away but the only consolation is that both sons claim to want to move back to the Bay Area in the future. Why was Winery Sage born - frankly, it’s too long of a story to post to include in here but if you are interested you can read about it at: Cheers! Karen and Ken

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