mainland Europe and North America, Iceland has always taken it's own unique path. Icelandic architecture and fashion is a reflection of it's unusual geography, the Icelandic palette is most comfortable when quality local ingredients are cured, cultured, fermented, or pickled, and the Icelandic people revel in self sufficiency and environmental sustainability. Iceland has always been deeply rooted in nordic liberal sensibilities, but unlike any other nation, they refused to bail out their banks after the 2008 recession, in 2009 they elected the world's first openly gay female prime minister and in 2010, Reykjavik elected John Gnarr, punk rock singer, comedian, and self proclaimed anarchist as their mayor. The physical landscape is as striking and unique as the culture itself; an island covered in black volcanic rock, lush green fields, geothermal vents and dramatic volcanoes. It was with this in mind, that Dennie, Henry and I boarded a plane for Reykjavik over Easter holidays, where we would spend 9 days swimming in hot pools, driving through fjords, and eating delicious Skyr (Icelandic yogurt).
Sergio Esposito preparing a panino all’allesso.
When the new Mercato di Testaccio opened in July 2012, vendors and shoppers did not universally rejoice. Higher rents, a less convenient location, a sterile atmosphere and a competing weekend farmers’ market nearby were among the complaints. But in the two and a half years since the structure’s inauguration, the market has proven to be a success on many counts, especially for the new opportunities it has created for vendors: Da Aretnio (Box 90) sells biodynamic wines selected by Jonathan Nossiter and wood fired baked goods from Lariano; Dess’art (Box 66) sells Sicilian sweets and savory snacks, including cannoli filled to order and panelle, generously salted. But the single most important innovation can be found at Mordi e Vai (Box 15), where Sergio Esposito, a retired butcher, serves sandwiches and side dishes made from family recipes.
Panino con l’allesso alla picchiapò
Visit Sergio in the Testaccio Market from Monday through Friday from 8:00am until 2:30pm. Get all the meaty things and whatever you do, don’t wear whit
Waaaay back in December 2012, I wrote a post in which I put Flavio al Velavevodetto(and few other places) on notice. That year, Flavio, a Testaccio-based restaurant specializing in traditional Roman fare, had gone from being completely satisfying to wildly inconsistent, a change that was likely linked to opening a second restaurant, Velavevodetto ai Quiriti in Prati. Service glitches and food failures became increasingly common, which isn’t unusual for a restaurant to suffer following expansion. Many readers and app users reported negative experiences–so I was concerned–but I remained optimistic that things would turn around.
Fast forward to December 2014 and Flavio al Velavevodetto has more than just rebounded. It has surpassed its earlier reputation and is one of the few places in Rome that manages to maintain an extremely high level of quality, both in its raw ingredients and its final dishes. Meat comes from the restaurant’s own herds and flocks, while seasonal vegetables are cultivated on their land in northern Lazio. Ingredients are transformed into superb Roman classics like polp
A villager in Kenya was herding animals one day recently when he came upon a head-turning sight. A ghostly creature with a mighty long neck was grazing off in the distance.
Upon closer inspection, the vision was revealed to be a female reticulated giraffe — tall, majestic and preternaturally white — and she was accompanied by a smaller apparition: a pale baby giraffe.
The sightings in June, in Garissa County near the Ishaqbini Hirola Conservancy, sent the villager scurrying off to tell rangers,the founder of the Hirola Conservation Program said on Thursday. The news has been ricocheting across continents and making headlines ever since.
Conservationists who hurried to the site managed to capture what is believed to be the first known video footage of white giraffes, said Abdullahi H. Ali, who founded Hirola and has been working to conserve the critically endangered hirola antelope in the eastern part of the country.
A very pricey cocktail in progress on the roof of the new-ish DOM Hotel.
The DOM Hotel, a five-star luxury retreat, opened on Via Giulia in central Rome a little less than a year ago. The place is a good value, in relation to its category, and the location is hard to beat. I weigh DOM’s pros and cons in this Sunday’s NYT Travel section (or read online here).
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