Two years in Milan slipped out unnoticed and I realised that I have never visited any place in Piedmont. Since recently we were always back and forth between Paris and Milan before the big move in two weeks, it was quite difficult to organise an exploration trip somewhere in Italy.
The days off in the beginning of the new year though became an unexpected occasion for daily gateway in Turin and the surroundings.
My husband was born to a family of yacht engineers and has moved more than twenty times around Italy with his parents. One of the places they have resided for some years when Rob was in the elementary, was Revigliasco. Having heard some of his brilliant childhood adventures set in there (like running around with his ufo solar balloon, yes, from an early age he was so much into the science, having the biggest dream to become ufologists!), I was more than curious to see with my own eyes the scenery of these stories.
So there we went. Revigliasco is located only 9km away from Turin and the road up amazed me with picturesque views towards Colle della Maddalena on one side and inviting, full of colours villas on the other. Once up we walked around to see how much the place has changed, checked out the old Travagilini’s house and meandered a bit among shining verandas and sun kissed wooden doors. When the scent of lunch preparations became our constant fellow-traveler we headed towards restaurant Fra Fiusch.
We got a wonderful table on the winter terrace, overlooking the mountain and the rooftops of Revigliasco. Knowing well the sweet part of cucina Piemontese, I was impatient to discover more.
Fra Fiusch turned out to be more than appropriate for this culinary journey.
We picked a notable representative of the Piedmont refined wine tradition, il Barbaresco (Cascina Bruciata)!
We were surprised with pre-appetiser of giardiniera, typical antipasto with marinated peppers, carrots, tiny onions and other verdura available in your garden.
The antipasto itself consisted of three (large enough) pieces of vitello tonnato, tuna-sauced veal, sformato di zucca, pumpkin flan (which was velvety) and a really delicious, strudel con porro e uva, or strudel with leek and grape.
Rob continued with angnolotti d’asino al barolo (noble Piedmont red wine) as a primo, a very exquisite and typical for the region, pasta filled with donkey bites, cooked in sauce of Barolo vine. I opted for a pumpkin risotto with a cloud of foamy Blu cheese and amaretti typical cookies for the city of Chivasso).
It was extraordinary delicious!
The lunch progressed with a particular, unforgettable dish which Rob ordered as a second. The famous finanziera alla Piemontese, The ricetta for the finanziera dates back in the Medieval centuries when the dish was considered food for poor people. Later, in the centuries it became more upscale and got the name of the bankers uniform, popular in Torino in 19th century. Anyway, what is more impressive than the history is the dish itself. It is prepared with tiny cocks combs, chicken liver, accompanied by veal spinal cords and brain bites. It is quite possible to differentiate the different pieces, so be prepared. I, myself, picked the ordinary stinco di maiale, the pork shank which turned out very delicate.
Lunch was crowned by a royal dessert, called Il Piemonte in Bocca, or Piedmond in a bite. Having a serious sweet tooth, even I was surprised to see five different regional desserts in one creation: chocolate bonnet, filled with pannacotta, layered on a base of cold zabaione, topped with a bicerin, decorated with crumbles of the biscuits Baci di dama. A real masterpiece.
After this celebration of the cucina Piemontese, we took a long digestive walk around. Overwhelmed with colours and stories I added one more hidden gem to my Italian experience.