While over at La Basia things are proceeding and following its usual rhythm, I temporarily hopped overseas. It would be too long of a story to tell you about how this all began: but if you are curiuos you can find out a little bit more here.
However, the important thing to tell you is that I am back here in America once again, taking advantage of a group of foodie/agri-friends to focus on the food movement here: how it is moving differently, or whether it resembles what is happening back at home. First destination New York. For now, nothing else but little tidbits, hoping to have a better chance in the future to develop my ideas here and there.
It was amazing to meet Paul Grieco, founder and “animator” of Hearth and Terroir. Paul is known for being one of the first to introduce and propose a wide variety of wines (many Italian) which were unheard of before. In the last few years, he has made a large impact on the city for his influence on the food and wine culture. To give you an idea, just have a look at the list of wines at Terroir ( download .pdf ): a thorough book full of information and stories. Obviously an honor to be accompanied by him while walking in the heart of the city and tasting memorable treats.
It was surprising to meet Terence Hughes, a wine blogger very familiar with Italy, and also an old friend of Sovversivi del Gusto! Speaking about Italian wines here is a great way of changing one’s perspective, realizing what messages are coming across from the other side of the ocean, why, and which are lost in translation along the way.
Emiliano landed in New York from Italy a little more than twenty years ago and opened a tiny restaurant, Trattoria Aldilà. His work is greatly respected and his restaurant was talked up about by many friends and fellow cooks. But what really surprised me was finding out that his restaurant was located right around the corner from the house where I was staying! I went back to visit him a couple more times: the first was my first night in NY because of its proximity, the second, wanting to meet him in person, but in reality going just because it was really really good : simple and delicious base ingredients, a touch of sobriety in the kitchen like a true Italian, and a bit of freedom and imagination especially in trying to match his style to that of the Americans. Perfect, and relaxing.
The Farmers Market in Union Square has been around for 35 years. Today it is held four times a week: four times a week, the local farmers (Hudson Valley is a thriving agricultural area) bring their produce, to the heart of the city. And so, it is convenient, while passing by to do the shopping for a festive dinner.
This is just the beginnning: My New York stay is followed by many other happenings and newfound friends who deserve more than just a few lines of introduction before moving on to San Francisco, where I am now. My storytelling is not done yet, so stay tuned for what is happening in the States!