The famous Italian “30-Second Breakfast” of a espresso and a pastry, consumed quickly at the counter, before sprinting off on your Vespa, is one of the charms of Italy. The coffee is so good no matter where you go, from small corner caffès to trattorias and pizzerias, the end of a good meal is always punctuated with a shot of espresso. Each time I sip…

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“Can I get that, um, on the side?”

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The first time I ever had gelato was about 20 years ago when it seemed to be all the rage in the 80’s, that staggeringly over-the-top era of excess, when we all seemed to be fascinated by Studio 54, record-shopping at the Gap (anyone else remember that?), Bianca Jagger, ultra-suede, and Bill Blass-designed Lincoln Continentals. There was place around the corner from Chez Panisse in…

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At Giolitti, where I got my daily cono of chocolate gelato in Rome… Giolitti via Uffici del Vicaro, 40 Rome tel: 06 6991243

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I confess. I’m one of those people that don’t like wine and chocolate together. There’s something about all those diverse flavors going every which way in your mouth…all I want when I enjoy chocolate is to taste rich, dark, unadulterated chocolate without any distractions. Gâteau Bastille: A Little Chocolate Cake with Prunes I’ve been meaning to write more about chocolate, and when Clotilde announced she’s…

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I took someone into a fromagerie the other day and he was asking me to describe a perfectly ripe, oozing camembert cheese. “Musty gym socks”, “funky undies”, and “barnyard-like” don’t exactly sound appealing, but were the most accurate descriptions that came to mind at the time (looking back now, however, perhaps next time I need to do some pre-editing in my head). The trick to…

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I was tapped to do this meme back in July, by Shuna, and I began to write it up. Then I stopped, and began writing much about my culinary travels. So the file got moved somewhere on my desktop, obliterated amongst the mess of files and folders here at chez Dave. As someone else mentioned when she got tagged for the meme, it’s kinda like…

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The hardest thing about living in France (aside from speaking French) is that most of us Americans here expect things to be like ‘back home’; corn-on-the-cob, Office Max open on sundays, and cheery customer service. I tried explaining that uniquely American concept of, “The customer is always right” to a French friend, and he just kept giving me this blank look as if I was…

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Franglais

Did you know you already speak French? It’s true, and I’m not just talking about quiche and Tar-jay. Franglais is the curious and unlikely (but perhaps inevitable) invasion of English into the French language. Not since the un-easy (but remarkably convenient) alliance of Franco-American culture, as found in Franco-American ‘Spaghetti-O’s™’ (whose relationship seems more Italian-American…if you ask me), has there been such a near-fatal collision…

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