We wanted to just take some time here, to reflect on our first dinner in the “In Bocca al Lupo” series . . . and well, our very first crack at doing pop-ups in general! Needless to say, it wasn’t a flop; in fact, we came out on the other side of a busy day and night refreshed, enthused, triumphant, and a little wine-buzzed. It was lovely.
The night started with an hour-long aperitivo bar with glass pours of wine and some cocktails. On the bar were plates of warm olives, chips, speck wrapped breadsticks–common happy hour fare in the northern reaches of Italy. Fuzzed out and drony dance music played in the background as guests filled a dark and moody restaurant.
Our guests took their seats at long tables set with olive leaves and bay branches, bursting with fresh cut citrus fruits. Beth at FORM floral + fine goods really outdid herself. The tables glowed with the light from dozens and dozens of candles. The music shifted to minimalist piano pieces at a heartbeat rhythm.
I “Piccoli Morsi”
Bread, Talleggio, Speck, Duck Liver Mousse | Vergano Vermouth Bianco
II “Risotto Doppio”
Gorgonzola, Cherry, Brussel Sprout | Vigneti Massa “Derthona” Timorasso 2012
Judion bean, Cabbage, Chicken, Brodo | Ceretto “Blange” Langhe Arneis 2014
Pate di Frutti, Citrus, Persimmon | Brandini Moscato d’Asti 2015
Dry gin, Barrel Aged Campari, Cocchi Americano
And now, the music becomes ever more avant garde with soundscapes, textures, intertwining rhythms. Courses are drawn out and anticipation builds. The layers of context become more clearly defined; each separate aspect of the dinner begins to coalesce . . .
VI “Terra Calda”
Raviolo, Egg Yolk, Black Truffle | Salvano “Gentilium” Langhe Rosso 2010
Grilled & Stuffed Cuttlefish, Potato, Eggplant, Caper, Olive | Punta Crena “Lumassina” Frizzante 2014
VIII “Osso Bucco Nuovo”
Veal Shank, Pumpkin, Saffron, Mostarda, Marrow, Smoke | Scarpa “La Selva di Moirano” Monferrato Freisa Secco 2009
IX “Sip Slowly” & “Dolce Primo”
Barolo Braised Pear, Hazelnut, Creme Anglaise | Fratelli Revello Barolo 2011
Each aspect of what we do in our regionally curated dinner series, “In Bocca al Lupo” is mindfully and artfully prepared. We trace coastlines and run our fingertips over the Italian topography. We talk about landscape and deep histories. We insert layers of sensation and meaning into the evening. There is a progression throughout dinner, there is anticipation; we feast on your senses. We paint with both broad strokes and in fine detail. We put massive amounts of attention into things so that they seem minimalist.
It felt like a dream–a dream we want to dream over and over again. Stay tuned for “In Bocca al Lupo, Vol. 2”