Lunch in Chianti or Dario, famous Butcher, Judy famous Chef, the 2013 version.

Yeah, I know that it seems to be all that we do…go out and eat.  Well, it is but it isn’t.  We actually do a few other things.  Like having colds, going to the doctor, going to the pharmacy, searching high and low for sugar-free cough drops, trying to get the stuffa fixed, trying not to spend money but failing.  (do you really want to see the pics of our tissue filled trash cans?)   So when we were sent a treat from my 90 year old uncle… money!  And he wanted us to ‘treat ourselves to a holiday meal’ I jumped at the chance to join a group of expats for lunch. 



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That’s my Uncle John in the center.  On the left is my cousin Bob and on the right is his sister (also my cousin) Ann.  You can see where my uncle signed under his picture.  It was so sweet and unexpected to receive this that I tears came to my eyes. 


We were meeting a group of expats at a very famous butcher shop in Chianti.  I have written about it before.  Please click on this link and refresh your memory, but then come back!



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There are a number of reasons that I wanted to go to this.  First, even though it is about a 1.5 hour drive for us, once we got there it is easy for Ben to get to.  That means no driving down streets smaller than our car or up hills and trying not to hit the folks walking in the road or not trying to squeeze into tiny parking spaces.  Nope, none of that.  There is even a parking lot. 


Second reason, the menu, while limited, is very reasonably priced.


Third reason,  we would be eating with Judy, friend of Dario’s.  How could we go wrong?


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Our friend, Grace rode with us and we arrived there a little early and were sent down to the shop to  have snacks and red wine.  The red wine was very freely poured.  It is a good thing that I don’t drink red wine. 


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The shop is small when 15 folks are crammed in there.   The meat counter looks good.  And besides that and the snack table there are many interesting things to look at.


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(I think I can see a chicken picture in the future along these lines????)


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And then we were off, upstairs to sit at a long table for lunch.  Judy, wisely suggested that we share 1 tasting menu (20 euros) and 1 burger menu (10 euros).   Sounds like a good plan to me.  So out came the food.  Click on this link if you want to see the menu.   (For those of you who like to know the cost along with wine and the service charge it worked out to be 21 Euros a person)



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First beautiful, fresh vegetables to be dipped into what is called pinzimento, a mix of very, very good olive oil, salt, pepper and vinegar if you want it.  (the white vegetable is fennel)


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Then, what  many of us know as steak tartar.   I hear you all going…EEEEEEE!  But the meat is so fresh and so good.  This is nicely seasoned.  It really is a good dish.


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Then what Dario calls Chianti Tuna which is really delicately cooked pork loin.


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Cosimino or meatloaf with a fruity sauce



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and the porchetta.  Roast pork with herbs


And thus ends the tasting menu



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Here is the burger which is really more like chopped steak.  It came with roasted potatoes.



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And here is Dario with his lovely wife Pam


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And here is Judy, holding up the cow place mat.


It was great fun to be with lots of folks and enjoy a very good meal.   So thanks Uncle John.


And if way up there at the beginning of this post you went to the link about the post I had written earlier, now it is okay, go back to that and at the top on the left you will see a post that I wrote ‘Dogs and maybe some smart cats have it figured out’.  Now go read that.  The uncle that I mention in that post is my sweet Uncle John.  He got it figured out.  I hope that I will too.


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