Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Roma, Italy day one. EatWith

We left Portland on a raining Sunday afternoon at 2pm. It took us just over 16 hours to get to our Hotel in Rome. We checked in at 4pm. I had arranged for us to have our first dinner with EAtWith, a company that allows you to purchase a seat at a local chef's table. We attended "our family's traditional roman cuisine" hosted by Barbara. But we had 4 hours to kill, we knew if we took a nap we might miss the dinner. So we found a coffee shop, had a few espresso shots and started to explore the neighborhood we were staying in. 

We hired an Uber to take us to Barabara house. Rome is filled with tight one way streets, drivers and motorcycles whip right through them. We were able to find her apartment and rang her doorbell. We walked up tight stairs and were welcomed with open arms as if we were old friends. 
It was just over 1,000 sq feet and decorated with nick nacks everywhere. 
The other couple we dined with were from the Netherlands. ( more on them later)

The night started with a refreshing glass of white wine.
 After some causal conversation we had our first course, Brusectta with olives, mushrooms, tomatoes and aged balsamic. 
Next we had more wine, and were asked to sit at the table. 
This was a risotto dish with tomatoes. Basil, and other herbs. It was cooked so perfectly. The tomatoes really shined. 
All these dishes were made in this tiny kitchen and 4 burner stove. 
Our next dish was ravioli stuffed with mushrooms with zucchini and brocolii with fresh Parmesan cheese on top. Bo, our new found friends, made the mistake of asking for more salt on his pasta. We thought it was perfect the way it was.
At this point we switched to an amazing Syrah 
Which we throughly enjoyed. But I was starting to get a bit full and from the smell of the house, I knew we were just getting started.
Our next dish was u far my favorite, home made gnocchi with a smoked Gorgonzola cheese. I really wanted to lick my plate. The sauce was perfectly flavored and matched the gnocchi,
Barbara's friends, pictured I the back came by to talk with us about our travels.
Next was the salad course, seven with chicken filled with fig braised in a red wine. It was also quite delicious, but by this point I was pretty full and the wine some how kept getting filled up.
Next we had gelato with walnuts, espresso (decaf) and other small pastries.

It was so sweet and creamy. I was happy to have the strong espresso to cut the sweetness.

After dinner I started to get very very sleepy. But the night was not over yet. We then got to sample various digestifs.
 Her mothers homemade limoncello was by far my favorite. John tried many many more. 
We had such a great first night. We left her house around 11:30pm and head straight to bed. 

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