On Monday, 15th March I attended a dinner at Society Restaurant, Melbourne.
Massimiliano Ferraiuolo is a chef (originally from Naples) who is visiting from Italy for a week’s residence at Society Restaurant and cooking each evening. The event is part of The Melbourne Food and Wine Festival and is called Around Italy in 7 Days – Travel north to south with a different gastronomic journey each night.
As you know, there is no such thing as Italian food, you have to specify the region and this event began with a menu with dishes from the Dolomiti, a group of impressive mountains in the eastern section of the northern Italian Alps. Living in Trieste as a child I know and visited the nearby towns Sappada and Corina D’Ampezzo, where I ate rustic food in trattorie.
This was not what I remember eating in the trattorie (domestic traditional), but I was not disappointed. The food was of high quality, very professional, adventurous and modern, beautifully presented on the plate and with the flavours and ingredients faithful to the region. I say modern, because the duck and the venison fillet were served rare (as is in let’ s say the France tradition). The service was excellent .There was also generosity with the wine – the glasses kept on being filled.
The event first advertised Sicily as the final destination. Unfortunately diners will need to make do with evenings in Naples (Chef’s home town so this should be good) Sardegna and Puglia.
Mi e`piaciuto tutto quello che hai preparato e ho apprezzato la difficoltà che hai avuto per trovare i prodotti adatti. . Forse quello che mi è piaciuto di piu’, è stato il baccalà mantecato – lo mangiavo spesso a Trieste…. e quegli gnocchetti Tirolesi.
- Pan seared duck with asparagus and artichokes.
- Venetian dried cod with pea mousse and rye bread (photo).
- Ravioli filled with ricotta and ravioli filled with porcini mushrooms and veal
- Tyrolean dumplings, with fondant cream cheese sauce and shallow fried proscuitto di Parma (photo).
- Venison fillet pan seared with autumn vegetables (photo).
- Venison shanks (slow cooked) in a red wine jus with cherries, potatoes and black pepper.
- Warm apple strudel with vanilla ice cream and crème anglaise
- Pistachio crème brulee with lemon and olive oil ice cream and fresh fruit.
- Fresh berries and nuts dipped in bitter chocolate, an amaretto and some caramels.
(It was even covered with snow (icing sugar) from the Mountains. See feature photo.