Thursday, July 17, 2014

Turin - Days 1 + 2

I've always had some luck with landing canceled/delayed flights, passenger oddities (I did tell you about the woman who lost her teeth on an 18-hour flight from India, right?) and several overnight "bonus" vacations in cities I wasn't supposed to be in - Memphis, Johannesburg, Chicago. However, my luck has increased lately to include something happening on every trip for the past year or so. My trip to Italy was no exception with flight delay, then maintenance, than a cancellation, a switch to a different airline and a lost bag. I really don't mind, as it makes for funny stories and I am still alive and well to tell them.

Before I could sleep, I had to have some pizza so I headed to Rossopomodoro which was one of the only places I could find open for an early dinner at 8pm. It was nothing fancy, it was mall food after all, but it was delicious.
After a fitful night's sleep, I spent the day learning, listening and meeting microfinance colleagues at the conference I am here to attend. After ten hours of that, it was time for dinner. I headed out with one of my co-workers, a woman we met from the States who is living in Tanzania and an Italian man living in Azerbaijan to Bastian Contrario. Up in the hills overlooking Turin, this restaurant was an interesting experience. The food was great but the characters surrounding it added additional flavor.

The meal started out with a glass of prosecco, fried sage and a buffet of 69 hot and cold appetizers. The waiter was not pleased at the amount of food we had consumed and refused us the pasta until we had reached a level of acceptability. We were then brought three pastas - gnocchi with roasted zucchini, ravioli with mint, nuts and cheese, and spaghetti with truffle sauce. The second course started with rabbit (which I did not eat) and then we ended with dessert, homemade ice cream, chocolate ganache and hazelnut crunchy bits. Washed down with plenty of red wine and a small glass of liquor from an ice-encrusted bottle, we left four hours later and headed for bed.

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