Sunday, May 27, 2012

Dining in Rome III

Welcome back Dear Readers

Dear Friends.

By now 

I'm sure you can see that

dining in Rome 

is a joy. 

On a Saturday night

my Dear Friend Paolo & I

navigated the narrow streets of Rome


Il Convivio

for another wonderful meal.

Shortly after we were seated 

we were served these 

curvy breadsticks,

some of them seasoned with saffron.

They also brought us 

fried olives stuffed with clams,

and little dollops of 

parmesan gelato...

as well as

breads & breadsticks 

with prosciutto.

All this just to wet our appetites!

Then our 

Gran Menu Degustazione


It started off with light & delicate

Fried Prawns and Whitebait with Artichokes,

Zucchini Flowers & Aromatic Herbs.


It was followed by 

one of the brightest and most refreshing tartare's 

I've ever had...

Local Mackerel Fish "Tartare" 
with Seasonal Veggies
dressed in 
"Ceviche" Style

had everyone swooning!

Our pasta course...

Spaghetti with local Clams,
Smoked Olive Oil, 
Sarawak Pepper-corn, 
and Grey Mullet Fish Roe

was good 

but a little bitter for me.

Our next course was rich and delicious...

From the Roman to the Jewish Style:
Deep Fried Artichoke
served with a
Pork Surprise Side

The Surprise was an earthy pork liver.

Then came my hearty main course... 

Guinea Fowl Leg
stuffed with 
Black Truffle and Porcini.

After all these intense flavors,

what could one possibly serve to transition from savory to sweet?


Pre Dessert:

Lapsang Souchong Gelato
served on a bed of Coffee 
with a Berry Coulis
and Salumi Chiffonade.

I thought it was gorgeous!
The gelato...amazing!
I'm not sure if I could have done without the salumi or not?!

But it was very, very good!

Tiramisu Mousse

that I had for dessert was  
rather uneventful in comparison.

The exquisite 

Petit Fours & Coffee...

the perfect way to end 

a lovely meal. 

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Dining in Rome II

My second night of culinary brilliance in Rome came at

Il Pagliaccio


Centro Storico.

How funny...

seated next to me,

the same nattily clad Japanese couple,

that had been dining across from me at 

La Pergola

the night before!

I guess great minds think alike.

This contemporary store front 

was dressed nicely as well,

and I settled in for 


8 Course Tasting Menu

"Il Pagliaccio."

It began with...

1st course - 

Sea Bream Carpaccio - slightly smoked, in a broth with a foam, beet, and egg

2nd course -

 Crab Salad with green mango, clams, sea water, and puffed rice... 

on the side...

 a beautiful cup of jasmine rice and coconut cream.

3rd course - 

Oxtail & Foie Gras 

with peanuts, melissa, chocolate, baby wild asparagus, and a borage flower

4th course - 


with potato sauce, black rice, clams, and herring roe

5th course - 


stuffed with cheese, veal consommè, asparagus and mushrooms

6th course - 

Striped red mullet 

with steamed avocado, vegetables, and argan oil

7th course - 

Spicy lamb with smokey eggplant and chickpeas

was served with a rich & savory...

lamb broth.

Then came the...

Pre Dessert - 

Cheese Snack with goat and cow cheese mixed, tapioca, 
sherry vinegar jelly, mint and chocolate biscuit, and strawberry granita...

And lastly...

8th Course Dessert – 

Crunchy Biscuits with caramelized pineapple, cardamom and pineapple sorbet, 

calvados caramel, and whipped cream

I finished off this extraordinary meal 

with a 

Jamaican Blue Mountain Espresso.

This was another spectacular evening.

I loved the modern, hip room, 

the gracious service, 

and the 

brilliantly thought out cuisine. 

My Japanese Friends 

left with smiles on their faces.

I did too!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Dining in Rome I

A few nights ago I leapt from 

The Hotel Lord Byron 

and  into a waiting taxi.

The taxi took me down the hill in Parioli,

across the Tiber into Prati, 

and up into the hills that surround Rome. 

Destination -  The Rome Cavelieri


Dinner at the 3 Michelin star

La Pergola!

The sun was close to setting when I arrived 

and the entry level with softly lit pines 


soothing and inviting.

I went up to the 9th floor and was seated at my beautiful table.

Menus arrived.

Breads arrived. 

Then came a gorgeous 

olive oil from 

Lake Garda.

Delicately fruity and a bit peppery,

it was delicious.

I will have to find out who made this nectar of the Gods 

and pass it on to you!

Having perused the menus a bit,

I decided on a 6 course meal.

It was spectacular!

I started off with...

Duck foie gras with apple, almond and amaretti

that was rich, silken, and had a bit of a crunch - amazing!

Up next a modern take on a rather traditional

Roman dish - carbonara.

Fagottelli  "La Pergola" -

Little pillows of pasta stuffed with and drizzled with

a carbonara sauce, received a grind or two of cracked pepper

as it arrived at the table.

Then came the subtle and lightly crisped

King Prawns in tempura on puree of fried squids -

Are you swooning yet?!

I can assure you I was!

Then there was a very sexy, savory dish!

Black Cod with marinated anchovies and chilli pepper sauce

was so incredible, and to think that it looked like an

abstract expressionist piece - Motherwell perhaps -

made it even more brilliant!

For my last entree an unctuous...

Veal cheek with curly endive, burrata

and popped rice with curry and saffron -

was the ultimate comfort food!

Then the table was cleared and there was a bit of a pause

before the 2nd part of my meal


The Grand Dessert

It began with a

little silver case filled with Petit Fours,

and a little dish of a

Mango Sorbet with Lemongrass Sauce.

The four sided case had three drawers per side with a couple different little cookies,

 candies, gelees etc... per drawer.

24 of these delicious little bites!

All for me!

When I'd enjoyed a few of these delicious treats

I cleared my palate with this

tart sorbet.

I was in 7th heaven and began thinking of delicious coffees.

But no,

that was not to be...

not yet!

After all they sure didn't call this the

Grand Dessert

for nothing!

Along came...

The Warm Desserts

a Banana Raspberry Boat, 

Licorice Souffle, 

and a shot of a Coconut Cream.

And then,

what would Warm Desserts

be without the contrast of

Cold Desserts?

These included a Tiramisu like mousse,

Champagne gelee with a little baby strawberry...


By this time my head was spinning, I was laughing,

 wondering if someone had been playing a joke on me!

But no, this was all a part of the plan and their

Grand Dessert.

It was time now for a smokey espresso.

As I pondered how perfect my evening had been,

the beautiful setting, the elegant service, every mouthful of my meal,

the absurdly extravagant dessert,

a server strolled by and slid these

Homemade Chocolates 

in next to my cup.

I just had to laugh.

La Pergola was a joy & a delight

and worth every Michelin Star.

If you are like me,

you will not want to miss treating yourself to a sumptuous evening

at this wonderful restaurant

when in Rome.



Tuesday, May 1, 2012


Welcome Back 

Dear Friends, Dear Readers!

I hope you'll forgive me 

for being gone for so long.

And I hope you'll tune in to 

Global Around Town 

this week 


I'm reporting from Rome!

There will be plenty of





and more...

So do stay tuned!

I'm staying in Room 502

at the very lovely

Hotel Lord Byron

in the Parioli  District.

This quiet neighborhood,

filled with beautiful 

embassies & residences,

is the perfect setting for this 

32 room villa 

with world class



I strolled the neighborhood and 

dined in at 

Sapori del Lord Byron

This was a nice way to 

start off what I'm sure will be a

most colorful trip 




thanks to my tireless 

Concierge Andrea,

I'm off to the 

3 Star Michelin

La Pergola!

I am thrilled that with much persistence,

he was able to secure me a table.

More on all of this soon!