ALL STAR CHEFS’ LUNCH – IDENTITÁ GOLOSE

If you’ve watched food shows on TV for most of your lifetime, I ask you to name the first TV food personality you can think of who introduced you to real Italian food. I’d venture to say we’d name the same person – LIDIA BASTIANICH. I’ve watched her on TV for years and years, and have loved her way of not only sharing her family’s recipes with us, but also her way of teaching. She’s a natural, and she’s the real deal.

When I got invited to a luncheon hosted by Lidia, I was obviously excited. Then I read more about the weekend of events at Eataly known as IDENTITÁ GOLOSE, and was even more excited. IDENTITÁ GOLOSE is a culinary organization that was founded in 2004 with the goal of showcasing Italian ingredients and cuisine, as well as the chefs that combine those two things in a modern way. That translated into the event by way seminars that focused on making the most of each ingredient without waste.

On Sunday, the event culminated in a 4-course paired luncheon hosted by Lidia, with each course prepared by a different chef (two actually from Italy). About 60 of us gathered in the Il Salone private dining room of Eataly, met and took photos with Lidia and the chefs, and sat down to a truly wonderful lunch. Let’s just say that when the first bite includes caviar, you know the rest of the meal is going to be special.

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WELCOME APERITIVO

CALVISIUS CAVIAR | paired with Guido Berlucchi, Cuvée “61” Franciacorta Rosé DOCG NV

Photo credit: Brambilla-Serrani
Photo credit: Brambilla-Serrani

ANTIPASTOChef Carlo Cracco

UOVO AFFUMICATO | smoked egg with vegetable ash

paired with Fontanafredda, “Pradalupo” Roero Arneis DOCG 2014

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PRIMOChef Michael Tusk

TORTELLI DI TOPINAMBUR | handmade pasta with jerusalem artichoke

paired with Fontanafredda, “La Lepre” Dolcetto DOCG 2010

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SECONDOChef Giancarlo Perbellini

SPALLA FONDENTE D’AGNELLO, CIPOLLA, MOZZARELLA AFFUMICATA E PANE AL POMODORO 

paired with Fontanafredda, Barolo Serralunga d’Alba DOCG 2011

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FORMAGGICAROZZI

QUADER DE CAVRA, FORMAGGIO BRANZI, VALTUNT DELLA VALSASSINA

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DOLCEChef Rob Wing

CROSTATA DI “BUTTERMILK” | buttermilk crostata with amaro syrup, fennel & orange streusal, candied orange zest and yogurt-licorice gelato

paired with Fontanafredda, “Briccotondo” Moscato d’Asti DOCG 2014

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The welcoming aperitivo of caviar on mini blinis was a treat! I love caviar, and became and instant fan of the Calvisius brand. Each lunch course was great, but my favorite was definitely the pasta (of course). It was comforting, light but filling and just delicious. The Jersualem artichoke gave it a subtly nutty flavor, and paired so well with the wine. My sweet tooth definitely loved the Buttermilk Crostata. If you know me, you know that I love all desserts that are custard in nature. This one satisfied that obsession and was a lovely dessert. No Italian meal is complete without an espresso, which everyone at our table enjoyed along with the mini pastries pictured above.

It was a lovely lunch, only topped by meeting Lidia and having one of her cookbooks signed for me. Thank you, Lidia!

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{Thank you to the Wagstaff team for the hospitality!} 

EATALY CHICAGO | 43 E Ohio St, Chicago, IL 60611

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