This week's tablehopper: the Barolohopper.


Buon giorno! The stunning view from my room at Il Boscareto. Photo: ©

Um, wow. I could use upwards of 20 different pictures for today’s intro image. This last week in Piemonte was simply extraordinary. It was my first time visiting the region, and I was blown away with the beauty of the Langhe—Italy in the fall is something else. Same goes for the extraordinary wines (what a life, quaffing Barolo and Barbaresco and arneis daily), the elegant cuisine, and the absolute flurry of white truffle from Alba with each meal was over the top. And after a week of sleeping on the fantastic bed (and linens) at Il Boscareto, let’s just say my bed at home feels like a bunk bed at camp. I can’t wait to write this trip up soon. And it was so much fun to be speaking Italian again—my brain was whirring. But … it’s also good to be home. And it’s high time to work off a month of absolute and utter decadence, mamma mia. Halp.

In the meantime, it was a good thing my flight from Italy got me in on Sunday evening, because I was able to escape my computer yesterday and listen to Ferran Adrià speak to a sold-out audience at the Castro Theatre (here’s a pic for ya—yeah, I was lucky to be just three rows back, thanks to a friend who saved me a seat!). I was a little concerned about having enough energy in my jet-lagged state to stay awake, but the barrage of inspiring images and his high level of verve kept me wide awake, and the audience rapt (I think almost every chef in town was there). It was less of an interview, and more of a TED-like presentation on cooking, vision, cuisine, excellence, and creativity (a word he’s not a fan of). I especially enjoyed his thoughts on the many stages and iterations and concepts an original idea can take, and his belief in sharing information and ideas. We also got a sneak peek of the upcoming ElBulli Foundation (kind of like a thinktank/ideation center and recipe archive), and the majority of guests walked out of there with a copy of his latest book, The Family Meal. For details on where he dined while in San Francisco, check out today’s starlet entry.

This Wednesday I’ll be heading over to the Wine & Spirits Top 100 tasting, always one of my favorite wine events of the year. And just like last year, it looks like we’re slated for some beautiful weather this week. Friday, my friends and I will be at the Le Dîner à San Francisco, which should be a fun one, and Saturday I’ll be participating in a Litquake event, do come by!

Enjoy the sun! Ci vediamo!

Marcia Gagliardi

View tablehopper Newsletter from Tuesday, Oct 11 2011