Our dirt bikes bring all the boys to the yard. Damn right, they're better than yours.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

the food!

Regarding my dad's last post, yep, the food really is different here than the Italian food at home. Over the last couple nights, Kristin and I have indulged in two fantastic meals here in the Piazza di Spagna area; last night we ate a fixed-course meal at this place on Ripetta street which prides itself on the freshness of its seafood and the simplicity of its preparation.

We sat down and received complementary flutes of champagne, after which the owner of the place came up and explained how he prepares his food: very simple, no excessive herbs or garlic--just lots of fresh-pressed olive oil from his own property to accent the natural flavour of the foods. After ordering a bottle of white wine (Pinot Grigio, which they do phenomenally well here), Kristin had the seafood menu; I don't really recall what she had, but I went with the meat menu and received an appetizer of air-dried beef, arugula (a peppery, stringy lettuce) and parmesan cheese. Then came the primo course of pasta (mine was a fettucini alfredo with mixed seasonal veggies) and then the meat course, of which mine was incredibly tender veal cutlet with mushrooms. After that, they brought four bottles of apertivos to the table for us to choose from; there were three grappas--one licorice, one juniper and one crazy herb one that tasted awful--as well as some homemade limoncello, and I tried em all. As the couple of North Carolinans that were sitting next to us put it, they all tasted like moonshine--but still, I thought they were pretty good. Except for that one. And in case you're curious, three courses with wine and a whole bunch of complementary champagne and grappa came to an even 100 Euro for two (about $160 CDN), which for here is pretty damn good.

Tonight we had another excellent meal at a seafood place (lots of fish here, which is a side of Italian cuisine that gets neglected in the West) which featured tons of pasta, shellfish, wine and limoncello. But it's not like we've been eating like this every night; if you're not up to spending that kind of money, the rest of the food here is actually pretty stereotypical; there's a ton of pizza places that cut your pizza into two squares and then put then together cheese-side-in for easy portability; then there's the grilled panini, stuffed with tons of proscuitto ham and whatever cheese strikes the owner's fancy, and, of course, there's gelato, which must all be made in one factory worldwide, because it comes in exactly the same flavours here as they have at Block 1912 on Whyte.

So yeah: the food is pretty much what you expect Italians to eat, except there's way more seafood and twice as much olive oil. Which, of course, is way better than the split ox shins those crazy bastards in Paris were eating. And I'll totally bring you back a bottle of limoncello, Dad. If nothing else, it's a good conversation piece. :)

As for everything else--Iain: that's totally crazy! I forgot that Vue did the Pyrogy House. And then there's your one. Why is Edmonton killing itself? It's not even especially dry this spring, is it? Weird. Dave: Oh, sorry to catch you off-guard with the suggestion for Saturday; it just seemed logical, as it's the day we're coming back. but if you're game we're game, even if we'll still be eight hours ahead and totally crying. But thanks for sending out the invite to everybody; whatever happens, we're really looking forward to it. Except for the coming home part, in a way. you know.

Today, we went to the Colosseum (it's big) and the Forum (it's old) at the Palatine (it's pretty). In all a touristy day, but the last one we plan on doing. tomorrow, it's a little more shopping, a day in Trastavere, and then to bed, for the next day we sail for London to check out the 19th-century medical operation museum for Rue Morgue. And then, home. and work. AND YOU GUYS! WHOO!

Except Collin and Dave Alexander and Ken and Sunita and Mike Winters and Julie and Jody and Heather. You don't live in Edmonton.


Post a Comment

<< Home