Great Italian Wine You Can Bank On!

For those of you who don’t know it, the University of Gastronomical Sciences in Pollenzo was the world’s first university entirely dedicated to the science of Food & Wine, promoting a new, ecologically sustainable, quality-based standard that also focuses on what is right and just for producers. Founded on an idea from guru Carlo Petrini, […]

Arti-Choke Me!

On a recent jaunt to Rome, I nearly OD’d on artichokes. I know, I know, do I have no self-control? It’s just that Rome is more than the capital of Italy… It’s the capital of artichokes! The Roman dialect word for artichokes is cimaroli, also called mammole, and this tender variety is round and without […]

Even the Sommeliers…

Celebrate, good times, come on! The Genoa chapter of the Italian Association of Sommeliers (AIS) held its annual Christmas Party in Palazzo Imperiale’s prestigious Salone delle Feste (if the building is called the ‘Imperial Palace’ and the room is ‘the big room of parties’, how can you go wrong? You can’t!) As long as it’s on […]

The Way We Were

Memories, like the corners of my mind… On a recent trip to Sicily, I was reminded that, once upon a time, we used to eat a different way too. Maybe it was that starlit night in the piazza with the great Baroque basilica front-lit against the black sky… It just evoked another era. Or maybe […]

The Sacred and the Profane

August is a special month in Italy: the entire country closes down for about 2 weeks and it all looks like a Hollywood set — where did all the people go? To the beach, to the mountains, but no one stays in town! It is also the start of the harvest time, and that is […]

Italy, Land of Chocolate!

It is too hot to talk about wine. So let’s turn our thoughts to something cool… Gelato! When I am in Milan’s Central train station, I often stop to have a Venchi gelato. Venchi is better known for its chocolates; take a look! Delectable, no? Chocolate is one of those things (like wine) that is […]

When Life Gives You Lemons…. Make Limoncello!

As often happens in late winter/early spring, friends showered me with their ‘untreated’ lemons, meaning these were the real McCoy: pure, unadulterated lemons.   So I get a ‘gift’ of 6 lemons here, 8 lemons there …. What to do with a fridge full of lemons? Limoncello! I peel the zest only off of 14 […]

Eat, Drink and Be Merry…

…for Tuesday is Martedì grasso, better known in its French version of Mardi Gras! That is to say, it is Carnevale, ogni scherzo vale! which goes a tad further than ‘Trick or treat!’ I dare say! The tricks, or scherzi, I’ve seen come closer to charivari than the ritual throwing of rotten eggs at a jack-o-lantern. […]