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Italian Culinary Week: Israel has ‘My Brilliant Friend’​ on the menu

The rich calendar of events for the Italian Cuisine Week organised in Israel will include a special menu drawing inspiration from Elena Ferrante’s novel ‘My Brilliant Friend’ (‘L’amica geniale’). Following the presentation to the press on Sunday, the initiatives will initiate on Monday, 18 November, with the scientific conference “Food & Foodways. Cooking as a Laboratory for Citizenship” which will discuss how cooking and banquets can offer an opportunity to grow and socialise, a channel of dialogue and an effective catalyst for integration. In the evening, the Residence of Italian Ambassador Gianluigi Benedetti will host the traditional gala dinner with Chef Arcangelo Dandini, a Roman born and bred restaurateur, always careful about good taste and tradition.

On Tuesday, the programme will continue with a Master Class by Chef Dandini at the Danon Culinary School of Tel Aviv and, in the evening, the Chef will present his recipes at the ‘Quattro’ restaurant.  The programme – elaborated by the Italian Embassy, the Italian Cultural Institute in Tel Aviv, the Italian Foreign Trade Agency (ICE), ENIT, the Italian-Israeli Chamber of Commerce and Industry and by the Italian Culinary Academy, in cooperation with the major Israeli culinary institutions – follows the week with cookery classes and dinners in Italian restaurants with chefs Michele Bozzetto (at the Boccalupo restaurant in Herzlyia) and Emanuela Panke (at the Raffaello Restaurant in Haifa), a patisserie class with the emerging young pastry chef De Prai and the tastings of Italian wines with the editor of Wine Meridian, Fabio Piccoli. Four new initiatives will make it possible to taste real Italian ‘espresso’ at a promotional price at numerous Tel Aviv bars, drinks and cocktails made by mixologists Vincenzo Mazzilli and Nicola Milella, and regional dishes dedicated to Tuscany, Lazio, Campania and Sicily, at the Pasta Mia, Ernesto, Caffè Napoli and Sahki & Sahki restaurants. Moreover, at the restaurants George and John, Milgo and Milbar, and L28 in Tel Aviv, young chefs from Italy will prepare dishes expressing the unique Italian taste. On the cultural front, the film ‘Finché c’è prosecco c’è speranza’ by Antonio Padovan, preceded by a tasting session of Prosecco, was screened to celebrate the inclusion of the “Prosecco Hills of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene ” in the list of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

The programme also envisages a lecture on the link between oregano and zaatar and on the history of pasta. Ambassador Gianluigi Benedetti said: “This year too, the Italian Culinary Week in Israel will offer an opportunity to promote Italy, Italian taste and style through its territories rich of history and culture and its wine and gastronomic products that are unique in the world for quality and variety. Together with our partners, we intend to offer the Israelis the best of our chefs’ creativity and capacity of innovation throughout the week, leveraging the Mediterranean Diet as a healthy lifestyle and a balanced diet within everybody’s reach. Italian eno-gastronomy, with its links to regional cultures and traditions, is also an important factor to attract tourism. Considering the constant increase in tourist flows and their growth prospects, together with ENIT, we have elaborated a dense programme of events throughout the territory, open to all Israelis, to disseminate the “Italian Way of Life” and further promote tourist flows to Italy.”