“If you want to sample the most local food, try prix fixe dinner numero uno,” my waiter Terry suggests. I reply, “You know, in the States I’ve read that Alba is the birthplace of slow food movement.” Terry relies that sì, Italy’s Northern province of Piedmont, and especially Alba, is famous for its rustic cuisine, and says that most of the food served comes from the local farms and vineyards.
I tell Terry I hear the term slow food came as a reaction to the news of the first McDonald’s opening in Rome. Terry sighs and says, yeah, tourists come here to eat local food, and locals eat at McDonald’s. He quickly adds, “Not all locals do.”
My dinner came in four corsi, from frittatas in fresh herbs, roasted red pepper in anchovy sauce, sausage steeped in a Barolo wine sauce that was coupled with a light red Asti. The next wine selection shifted seemingly better than the rabbit served as my entrée—Terry had coupled that with a Barolo. I think he poured a local, sweet Muscatto with the three-piece ambrosia they called dessert, but I was far too blissed at that point to comment on the white wine.
Sorry about the McDonald’s, Terry. —Dave Cox