Friday, May 07, 2010
Artusi, Taglierini & Cheese Cake Friday
Barely on Italian soil for 12 hours and I’ve been in a vineyard, found ancient Roman ruins, eaten fabulous pasta, been schooled on the cookbook of Pellegrino Artusi and witnessed a bathing suit competition in the rain. Man this country sure does get busy! And this is just the first day.
From Rome to Forli there is a little highway that is beautiful and worth finding. It isn’t an autostrada; it is a trip back into an Italy I don’t see often. The destination, Bertinoro, near Forli, was a winery that I am interested in, Campodelsole. Fresh, simple Sangiovese is what I was in search of. I found it.
Along the way, we walked a vineyard that was being replanted, via GPS and a Lamborghini tractor. I really need to post all about that another time. I have been up too long and need to get some sleep. But I just wanted to drop a few photos in along with these short notes.
It was wet today, so there were muddy boots galore. Real people working in and with the earth, as it should be. I know some folks like to get all mystical and use fancy terms, but there ain’t nothing like getting into the fields and getting after it.
Lagniappe, ancient Roman ruins. Just sitting there, not quite blending in with the fields. Wealth of culture beyond time.
After a day of work, on the wine trail in Italy, we were hosted by Susy Patrito Silva, the director of the Casa Artusi , a museum, school and restaurant devoted to the work of Pellegrino Artusi. I was given an English Translation of his book, “Science in the Kitchen and the Art of Eating,”, with a forward by Michele Scicolone. Is this the tome pal DoBianchi told me he supplied endless translations from Italian for? I think it is. What a fun coincidence. Also coincidence, Susy had a great grandfather who was born in Colorado (like my mom) and family who were in the shoe business in California (like mine). As well, she hails from Ivrea, between Torino and Aosta, where some of my relatives live as well. Small world.
A bowl of taglierini with a ragu that was indescribably delicious. Brought tears to my eyes, so gorgeous it was. And with a local Sangiovese, it was the perfect food to arrive at once we finally got here.
For dessert? Well, I am still on a diet, but my eyes feasted on a local beauty pageant. Imagine a swimming suit competition under a stormy spring night. Someone left the cheesecake out in the rain.
And this is just day one. I am a lucky, lucky guy. And very, very tired. Buon Weekend, y’all!