11:17PM | Sala Comacina | Italy
Started the morning in the tiny town grocery — speck, bread, sugar cookies, croissants, and a wedge of fresh, creamy, decadent talleggio, almost unrecognizable next to the States’ Whole Foods variety. A quick stop at a café in Tremezzo, then off on the winding road to Lugano. A roadside goat greets us as we pass into Switzerland.
We climb up endless switchbacks to the quaint town of Bré, park the car, and begin our hike. The tiny mountain town is impeccably clean, with smoke wafting quietly from chimneys on slate roofs. The cobble-stoned trail leads through the outskirts of the village and passes into a forest of towering elm trees. After a few hours of steady climb, we cross the tree line and follow a steep ridge through a windy meadow. At the summit, a stone marker indicates the Swiss-Italian border.
The view from the top is an impressive 360 degrees, with Lago Lugano stretching in two directions, Lago Maggiore further off, and the snowcapped peaks of Switzerland and France in the distance. We break for lunch, pulling tangerines, bread, and salumi from our bag, and marvel at the view. The descent is rapid and tiring, and we happily remove our boots back at the car. A stop in Lugano for some chocolate and coffee, then a drive back to Como.
Dinner on a residential street in Tremezzo, on the backyard terrace surrounded by oregano and honeysuckle. The “restaurant” is run by an older couple, in the downstairs of their house. The meal, pizzas with prosciutto and porcini, mozzarella di bufala, and a pitcher of refreshing vino rosso, is simple and outstanding.