Dinner at Baglio Nuovo
So. Last night we are driving down a totally dark country road of olive groves, when a roadhouse appears. The owner of the farmhouse where we are staying, Don Carlo, has told us it's a simple country restaurant. We pull in. It is very fancy.
The owner greets us, smiles, seats us. There are three forks on the left side of each china plate (but paper napkins.) We are the only ones there. There is no menu. The owner speaks not one word of English (though he spent one month in Detroit and Cleveland), but uwe recognize the expression "fix-price."
First he brings a bottle of (chilled) red wine, and, a bottle of fizzy water, a bottle of still water, and a basket of bread. Home-made, of course. We are wondering how much this is going to set us back. Barb wants me to ask. I don't have the balls. So Patsy orders Peter into the kitchen, and Peter goes. He returns, says "twenty five each?" "For everything?" I ask. We think so.
And then!!! Here come:
Little biscuits stuffed with prosciuto
Sun dried tomatoes
Mushrooms with garlic
Chunks of Ricotta
Plate of prosciutto and provolone
And then!!!!! The Primi.
Busiate with bacon
Ravioli filled with ricotta and tomato cream sauce.
We will be happy to die right now.
A platter of grilled veal, sausages and pancetta. The pancetta tastes like a can of grilled pig fat. It is heavenly, if lethal.
All along the wine is being replenished.
A plate of grapes. I am thinking Please, God, let this be the dessert.
And two bottles of grappa.
And espressos all 'round.
After we have recovered, and ask for the check, the owner comes back and says: "100."
"That's it? Tutto?" I ask.
"Tutto." He says, moving his hands side to side and smiling a huge smile.
Plotnik says: "the dessert."
Duck agrees, though everything was fabulous, except the snails.
Peter says: "The guts. (I don't get this at home.")
Patsy says: "the funghi (mushrooms) with the busiati a close second."