Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Italian beginnings

Flew into Bologna only yesterday, shattered after an early morning that could have passed for a late night; such are the travails of crossing London in time for a 7.10 flight from Stansted Airport. After a doze on the plane and another on the airport bus, I woke into a happy dream when we found our way to the market area.

After a good lunch at Tamburini, everything felt more than OK as we headed out of town, to start our journey west.

We arrived in Modena, which is Lambrusco country.

The meal at the Osteria Stallo del Pomodoro was affably served and began with this fetching amuse-bouche, a tart of soft goat cheese with pistachio and fried shredded beetroot. So pretty!

The antipasto misto was a marvellous misto of many interesting things. So colourful!

The Soffiato di Parmigiano-Reggiano was a cheesy mousse baked in a hollow pear and served with vino cotto. Very nice.

When in Modena... gelato with balsamico tradizionale. We behaved so nicely that the waiter gave us each a few precious drops of 25+ year old traditionale as a parting gift.

En route to Asti, we stopped for some inexplicable reason at the AutoGrill,

where the amusements are many. It is not what most countries stock their highway rest stops with...

On to Asti where the sun shone on our afternoon stroll.

A watchful dog:

Who wouldn't want to shop at Save Money Square?

Supper at Il Convivio began with a warm and wonderful jerusalem artichoke tart, which was a sort of artichoke custard, with a sauce of local cheese and anchovies.

Then Ganascino di maiale - described as pork chicklets in the menu - braised in Barbera and beautifully seasoned; served on a polenta pancake which was a bit like a lovely dumpling.

When in Piemonte... of course it was necessary to finish with Bonet!

Tomorrow the biannual food and madness of Terra Madre/Salone del Gusto begins. Watch this space...


Anonymous Bernadette said...

Hey! My SIL is in Italy now, too! Haven't a clue where as she's been incommunicado with our large, extended family. But I'm sure she's having a grand time. Hope you are as well!

6:51 p.m.  

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