Slow Food Events Tuscany, November 2010

The Slow Food Movement began in opposition to the ‘Fast Food’ mentality that has seen people wanting bad food, fast instead of good food worth waiting for. It was initially founded in 1986 in protest of the opening of a McDonald’s restaurant near the Spanish Steps. The movement went global in 1989 and since that time, over 100,000 people in over 130 countries have joined up.

Below, you can find a what’s-on list for Slow Food Tuscany events in November, 2010.

Slow Food says their aim is to give importance to the taste of food, to learn to enjoy diversity in both recipes and in taste, to recognize the variety in production locations, to respect the seasons, to enjoy the entire process of dining on good food in good company (and a good glass of wine doesn’t go astray either!).

Taking your time to prepare food that is good to eat and good for you is par for the course for many common recipes emanating from Tuscan kitchens which take hours to cook. But slow food cooking also means slow food production and ingredients produced in the traditional ways, in the traditional areas and habitats.

The zero kilometers concept, which maintains that your food should come within the area you live in, not only supports local farmers, but also reduces costs in terms of price paid and costs on the environments by way of pollution. It’s the anti-globalisation concept that wants to keep farming in the hands (literally) of small producers.

It’s the eat-well, feel-well, live-well concept – and it’s delicious!

If you see the famous snail sign of the Slow Food movement displayed in a restaurant or food establishment, it indicates that they are abiding by the Slow Food principles (and that you may have to wait a little longer for your meal!).

Farmer’s markets are held around the world to aid small-level producers and also provide access to the produce for people who belong to Slow Food (or at least adhere to its mentality).

In 2004, the Slow Food movement took their goal to educate people to a whole new level by establishing the University of Gastronomic Sciences in Northern Italy. Studies are based on food and culture, not as separate concepts but as intrinsically united elements that have shaped humanity throughout the ages.

The movement aims it’s anti-fast food teachings to younger children through assisting in the creation of vegetable gardens at schools and through education.

Events are also organized by Slow Food groups around the world to help educate people in the Slow Food concepts.

Here are the Slow Food Firenze events for November 2010:

* 6 November, 2010 – Visita Azienda Petreto, Pranzo Osteria Da Melo, 10.30am

A course on Pourriture Noble, the ‘nobile mold’ (Botrytis Cinerea) which attacks only certain grape varieties and only under certain conditions, grape by grape. The morning includes a Vineyard visit to see the vines, a cellar visit and tastings of various vintages.

Next stop will be the Osteria Da Melo for a tasting menu comprised of mixed appetizers, traditional entrée and a Sicilian cannoli accompanied by Podere Sassaie and Colli Fiorentini.

The all-inclusive cost of the day is 30 euro for Slow Food members and 35 euro for non-members. Bookings can be made via or on Italian number +39 346 7897691.

* 6th November, 2010 – Cooking course and dinner ? Aïoli and other ‘creams’/sauces

Aside from Aïoli, other sauces taught will include Le Pistou, La Tapenade, Le Sausson, L’Anchoïade, Il Caviar d’aubergine and La Brandade de Morue.

The dinner menu will include:

Aperitif with tastings of various sauces: Tapenade, Brandade, Pistou, Anchoïade, and others.
Il Grand Aïoli with vegetables, legumes, egg and baccalà
Apricot tart with lavender

The cost for the course, aperitif and dinner is 60 euro per member and 70 for non-members.

* 9/13 November ? BREAD!

On 9th November at l’Antico Spedale del Bigallo, and on the 13th November at the Filippo Caioli dell’Antica Dolce Forneria (Antique Bakery) of San Casciano Val di Pesa will be held events focusing on one of the world’s most loved foodstuff ? bread.

The first component of the course will cover flour, yeasts, water, levitation, and bread-making, accompanied by tastings of different bread typologies and production methods, and traditional bread types of schiacciata classica, la morbidona, and croccantella. Tuscan salami varieties will also be on hand to accompany the tasting.

The second day will cover production techniques, followed by an early lunch based on specialties of the Antica Dolce Forneria (historic sweets bakery).

The complete cost is 30 euro for members, and 35 euro for non members. Maximum number of participants is 20. For further information and bookings, please contact Alessandro Schena on 347 3620639.

* 11th November at 10.30pm – Festa orti, Cena all’Osteria de l’Ortolano

For the National Day of Fruit and Vegetable Gardens, a dinner will be held at l’Osteria de l’Ortolano, completely based on vegetables grown by La Talea farm.

ANTIPASTO: Cacio Cheese and Cauliflower Flan, with Cabbage Flower Carpaccio
PRIMO PIATTO (First Course): Pumpkin Cream with Mint and Pepper, Spaghettoni pasta with Leek and Pecorino Cheese
SECONDO PIATTO (Main Course): Thistle Medalgions with Potato Wafers
DESSERT: Carrot Cake.
Wine produced by the PODERE PALAZZINO, Monti in Chianti.

Price is 25 euro for members, 30 euro for non members. To sign up, contact Alessandro Schena on Italian number (+39) 347 3620639.

* 12th November, 2010 – Slow Foods Florence (Italy) meets Slow Foods Harima (Japan)

In conjunction with Japanese Cinema Review, Slow Food Florence will be meeting Slow Food Harima. From 3.00pm, the groups will be conducting a visit of La Talesa farm.

At 8.00pm, there will be a visit to a Tofu producer ? tofu being a widely used ingredient in many oriental dishes of Japan (along with China, Korea, Vietnam, Thailand and Cambodia). Participants will see how tofu is created from curdled soy milk before being pressed into blocks. The process is, incidentally, quite similar to that of milk cheese.

The day will conclude with a dinner combing Florentine delicacies based on tripe (Crostino Poppa, Crostino di Crema di Trippa, Zuppa di Centopelli, Trippa alla Fiorentina), and typical Japanese dishes (Tofu, Oden and Harima Vegetable Tempura). A surprise dessert will also follow.

The cost is 5 euro for the Tofu production visit, and 25 euro for members for the Tofu visit and dinner (30 euro for non-members). Email or call Italian number (+39) 346 7897691 to book.

* 13th November, 2010 ? Presentation of Slow Wine 2011

Slow Food Editore and Slow Food Toscana are organising the presentation of “SLOW WINE 2011…..Storie di vita, vigne e vini in Italia” (History of Vines, Varietals and Wines) in collaboration with Slow Food Siena and the Consorzio del Brunello di Montalcino.

At 11.00am, at the Teatro degli Astrusi, there will be a presentation with the President of Slow Food Italia, Roberto Burdese , the President of Slow Food Toscana, Raffaella Grana, National Curator Giancarlo Gariglio e local experts.

A tasting at 3.00pm will be held at the Congress Centre of over 60 Tuscan wines recognised as being “Grande Vino”, “Vino Quotidiano” and other wines. All members of the Tuscan “Gruppo vino” will have their wines presented.
The cost of the tour including programme and tasting glass is 25 euro, entry accompanied by a guide (with one programme only) is 40 euro.

* 20-21st November, 2010 ? Petricci: Second Slow Weekend

In collaboration with the Comunità del Cibo di Petricci (Petricci Food Community), the event of “Il paese di Petricci’’, in the community of Semproniano in the Mount Amiata zone, the Comunità del Cibo (Food Community), there is the Pettricci Second Slow Weekend being held.

On the 20th November, at 10.30am the group will settle into their accommodation at the Agriturismo Cortevecchia (

At 11.30am, the Comunità del Cibo di Petricci will guide participants through the olive groves to learn about the entire working cycle up to the ‘frantoio’ (oil mill) for the pressing. There will then be a tasting of just-pressed oils and other specialties of the town.

Next will be a walk along the “STRADA DI TERRA MADRE” (Road of Mother Earth), focusing on Petricci and its history, including information on how and why the town became a Comunità del Cibo.

From 6.00pm, each participant will receive a coupon and a orientation map with suggested dinner itineraries. Each outlet will be offering one of the below listed dishes. The streets will be filled with live music and poetry performances.

The dishes:
ANTIPASTI DI BRUSCHETTE VARIE (Starter of Mixed Bruscettas)
POLENTA CON CAVOLO (Polenta with Cabbage)
FUNGHI FAGIOLI E SALSICCIA (Mushrooms, Beans and Salsiccia Sausages)
DOLCI TIPICI (Typical Desserts)
POLENTA DI CASTAGNE CON RICOTTA E VIN BRULE’ (Chestnut Polenta with Ricotta and Vin Brulè)
CALDARROSTE IN PIAZZA (Roasting in the main Piazza)
VINO LOCALE (Local Wines)

On Sunday, 21st November, at 10am there will be a guided visit in the ancient village of Rocchette di Fazio, a small town with a strategic and panoramic position that has been inhabited since the year 1000 (

Returning to Petricci for lunch, which will be coordinated in the same way as the previous evening’s dinner so as to continue with tasting all the delicious offerings at hand!

Cost is 80 euro for members and 90 euro for non-members, including overnight stay in double room with Italian breakfast, tasting, dinner and lunch. For children under 10 years of age, participation is being offered compliments of the Comunità del Cibo di Petricci.

There are limited places available, so it is advised to book in advance. Bookings and any additional information can be obtained by emailing or calling Italy +39 346 7897691.

You can become a member of the Slow Food Movement via their website. To find your nearest Slow Food group (‘convivia’), visit their site for Slow Food Convivia Locations.

The Original and Best Walking Tours are proud and ardent supporters of Slow Food. For information on collaborative events between Artviva and Slow Food Firenze, please feel free to contact us ( or Italian number +39 0552645033).

To see a range of Artviva Walking Tours activities, including Wine Tours, Cooking Classes with Fresh-food Market Visits, Tuscany Small-Group Tours with lunch and many other activities in Florence, Tuscany and Rome and Venice.

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