Saturday, October 13, 2007
From the Archives: Gargano: Buon appetito!
Let's talk about food, shall we? I'm sorry I was able to eat all these wonderful things, and you weren't there but maybe by posting these photos, we can tempt America into full embracing Italian cuisine! (We are getting there, yes, but some more work still needs to be done)
Anyway, lecture over, let me show you a few of the meals we had in the Gargano region of Puglia in southern Italy.
The meal up top -- a simple but delightful bruschetta -- took place at a bar at a beach near Peschici. I posted the photo to show you its killer location, and to make a point: the Italians are eating spaghetti and bruschetta and drinking house wine and enjoying many other gastronomic marvels at their beaches while we Americans eat hot dogs on the boardwalk! What's up with that?!
It sure made for a wonderful day at the beach. Just because we were not near a great restaurant did not mean we had to suffer through some subpar beach food.
We managed to squeeze in one more restaurant listed in the Gambero Rosso guide. It was La Collinetta in Peschici (if you are keeping track, that's our fourth meal of the trip at a restaurant listed in the prestigious guide).
You see in the photo above I just had to order spaghetti alle vongole one more time. What's not to love? Tomatoes, clams and spaghetti cooked al dente.
What else? Oh right, Il Nostro Inviato had orecchiette, the classic Pugliese pasta dish that's almost always homemade (in this case it was al pomodoro). Sorry that the photo is not National Geographic quality. But you can almost about make out the name of the restaurant on the plate so there's a slight silver lining!
We also ordered calamari fritti, which were as always buoni buoni buoni! And I ate scampi alla griglia, which were also quite good.
It was not the best meal, and we felt slightly rushed. But it certainly was adequate. We of course also ordered a bottle of local wine: Primitivo Salento IGT Rosso 2005 Tenute San Marco. Excellent!
Can't beat Primitivo, which is beginning to appear on wine lists outside of New York and other large American cities.
And we finished the meal with limoncello made by the owner's wife.
Those are the food highlights of our time in Peschici. I will leave you with a photo of a very run of the mill meal...which gives you an indication of how well we ate on the trip. Here was the lunch (crusty bread, local tomatoes, prosciutto and mozzarella di bufala) we enjoyed one day on our little patio at the Locanda della Castellana.
Grazie per averci seguito! Arrivederci!