VENU #29 Winter 2015

Page 45

The house from Under The Tuscan Sun

Pamela discusses the art of balsamic vinegar

“Agriturismo”. The preservation of deep rooted farms, particularly throughout Tuscany, are made possible through funding from the government, organic agriculture practices, traditional food preparation, and by functioning as a bed and breakfast or food destination, therefore, achieving environmental sustainability as well as financial grounding. Upon our rendezvous in Chiusi, the heart of the ancient Etruscan civilization, circa 800 BC, we toured the Etruscan Museum and strolled the modest town as we decompressed from our hurried train ride in from Rome. A stop for lunch at Pesce d’Oro, situated along the Lago (lake) di Chiusi, was a sign of good things to come. We were presented with fresh perch from the lake; “brustico” as it is called, flame roasted until the skin is black with char. The skin is peeled away to reveal a sweet, white flaky fish, only to be drizzled with fruity olive oil and a squeeze of lemon. And so the tone was set. We began a love affair with the natural resources the Tuscan landscape would have to offer throughout our trip. Sangiovese grapes at Poggio Etrusco

“Are you guys hungry?” asked Pamela. It was a unanimous YES! “It will be the last time you are hungry during your time here,” she assured. It was Game On!

Our villas at Poggio Entrusco, complete with living and dining rooms, full kitchen, large bathrooms and king size beds wrapped in fine embroidery laced Italian linens, are a welcome site at the end of each busy day. The villas become part of the Tuscan country experience,

Our culinary adventure took us to La Porta Osteria in the medieval

articulated by hand crafted wood, terra cotta flooring, and antique

village of Monticchiello, a charming town with pristine flower gar-

furnishings. The property is meticulously and artistically kept by Pamela

dens accentuating the grand stone dwellings. Here we were treated

and her husband, artist Johnny Johns. The duo, a west coast gal and

to a cooking demonstration by Chef Morena and a Tuscan wine

mid-western rocker dude / artist, have masterfully crafted their own

tasting with proprietor, sommelier and wine maker Daria Cappelli.

version of a life abroad, telling their story through food, wine, art and

Memories of the warm summer sunset, robust wine, and the silky

the land around them.

Timballo di Pecorino (a warm cheesy custard of sorts) topped with sautéed earthy wild mushrooms still play over in my mind and on

Cooking classes in Pamela’s kitchen are a wonderful and warm blend

my taste buds.

of hands-on, dough between your fingers tasks, and a virtual tour CONTEMPORARY CULTURE//MAGAZINE


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