I’m sitting outside the Pizzicato Bar in the small village of Vico del Gargano, Apulia, Italy.
Walking down the narrow alleys of the historical center, it feels like here time stopped many, many years ago. Houses made of stones with rough walls and steep stairs, tall chimneys and paved streets are both romantic and intriguing.
Among a population of just about 3000 people, a family runs this bar since 3 generations. Giuseppe is just 30 years old and he’s a passionate entrepreneur with tons of ideas… and great ones. After studying in Milan and New York he decided to come back and make a real business out of his family’s activity.
If you’re wondering what “Pizzicato” means, I just asked the waiter and she kindly explained this was the nickname of Giuseppe’s great grandfather. Literally it means “pinched” and people used to call him so because of his pimply skin.
Some 5 years ago Giuseppe opened the Pizzicato Eco Bed and Breakfast, where everything is based on respect for the environment: no a/c (but don’t worry, the air here is chilly at night even on summer!), separate refuse collection and solar panels are being added to make the accommodation units self-sustainable.
The 4 apartments are named after fruits (Fragola, “Strawberry” and Limone, “Lemon”) and sweets (Cioccolato, “Chocolate” and Nocciola, “Hazelnut”).
No wonder I was in the Cioccolato one. And I loved it. Most of the apartment is in the shades of green, my favorite color!
Another sweet surprise was the set of touristic information, including brochures and a dvd about the area, and the complimentary food that awaits you upon arrival: fresh fruits, water and, dulcis in fundo, a packet of sweets from the historical bakery owned by the family.
Chocolate scented candles and perfumes welcome you in the entrance. Yummy.
This little bed and breakfast offers an incredible amount of services. I admit I’ve been truly amazed by them, especially after I’ve been working in a 4 stars hotel until the other day and I realized we didn’t offer all this.
Screw 4-stars hotels, go for Pizzicato Eco B&B!
Just to name a few services: free wi-fi (a rarity in Italy, believe me), fully equipped kitchen including caffettiera and oven, use of gym and bikes free of charge, booking of tickets for trains and excursions such as Tremiti Islands and sea caves, and so on.
But the unquestionable winner of all the services is… *drumroll*
Breakfast from 4 am to 1 pm.
Breakfast from 4 am to 1 pm. I wrote it again in case you missed it! “Why 4 am?” – I asked. “Because that’s when the croissants (and sweets) are at their best, just baked”. Fair enough!
I also want to add some personal reasons why I would definitely choose this place for a holiday in the Gargano area:
- Position: Vico del Gargano is just a few kilometers from beautiful beaches, but not super touristy as the coastal areas. Moreover, on the other side there’s the beautiful “Foresta Umbra” (Umbrian Forest), an uncontaminated piece of beauty. I wonder why I didn’t explore this area before. I was all emotional while crossing the forest and almost expecting a fairy or a gnome to suddenly cross the road. Silly me.
- Weather: being the town on a hill, the air is much fresher than down on the sea level, making the heat much more bearable.
- Food: among many typical foods, the “paposcia” is basically a sandwich made of pizza dough, but of course you can’t guess how delicious it is until you try it! Super cheap and super good.
And then, if you want to have an aperitivo… Pizzicato Bar is the place to be!
I got in touch with Giuseppe thanks to Twitter when I first announced I was moving to the Gargano area. I couldn’t miss his invitation for an ice cream at the Pizzicato Bar! We kept in touch and I finally made it to Vico del Gargano. I stayed at the Bed and Breakfast for free in change of this review, but believe me I would’ve written it anyway because the place is just lovely, and I totally recommend the Pizzicato Eco B&B to anyone who wants to experience real Gargano.
You can find Giuseppe and his Bar/B&B on:
I’m going back home in the next days, and this was the perfect conclusion of my 2 months stay in the area! Thanks Giuseppe for the kind hospitality and thanks Gargano for being such a beautiful place.