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The much-anticipated dinners celebrating the Year of Italian Culture in the U.S. are upon us. To mark the occasion, we invite you to taste the very first bite from Chef Massimo Bottura’s exquisite culinary exploration.
2013, the Year of Italian Culture in the U.S, sees seven ambassadors of Italian food and wine - S.Pellegrino, Acqua Panna, Frescobaldi, Masi, Donnafugata, Berlucchi and ALMA - joining together for a year-long series of events examining the exchange between Italy and the U.S in the fields of cuisine, music, language, the arts, science and business.
The culinary side of proceedings kicks off in March at a number of exclusive dinners in New York, Washington D.C and Los Angeles prepared by one of Italy's most distinguished chefs, Massimo Bottura of Osteria Francescana, Modena.
The first of the three dinners will be held in New York on March 4th at the International Culinary Center (ICC) where guests will be invited to sample a culinary journey mapped by Bottura. Travelling through Italy with ingredients representing the North, South, East and West of the country, this geographical food-map and snapshot of Italy’s gastronomic heritage, flavors and cultural patrimony will tease the imagination to trigger new experiences with familiar ingredients.
Here is an exclusive look at the first dish the chef has devised for the dinner, an appetizer designed to clean the palate and transport diners on a special journey into Sicily, a place Bottura describes as“The Key to Italy”. As the chef explained to FDL: “We begin in Sicily, a place that has captured the hearts of artists and authors alike and has been given the name “The Key to Italy”. Sicily and Pantelleria produce such fragrant ingredients. Zibbibo grapes,capers, and oregano, almonds from the valley of Noto are blended with Calabrian bergamot to create an unexpected Sicilian granita – not sweet but savory. Combined with Acqua Panna, luminous and crystal, this amuse bouche prepares the diner’s palate for their journey.”