Saturday, October 28, 2006

Salone del Gusto

Yesterday we went to the Salone del Gusto at Lingotto Fiere in Torino, the former Fiat factory with the race track on the roof (yes the one where The Italian Job was filmed) which has now been converted into an exhibition & shopping centre.

The Salone del Gusto is an enormous food fair displaying produce from across Italy and the world. It is organised & supported by the Slow Food Movement which was founded in the Langhe region of Italy in 1989 with a mission to counteract fast food and fast life, the disappearance of local food traditions and people’s dwindling interest in the food they eat, where it comes from, how it tastes and how our food choices affect the rest of the world.

We went to the fair with Stefano who owns the farm where we are living. Stefano had a stand in the Italian section of the fair displaying his cakes and biscuits produced using hazelnuts grown on his farm. His stall was surrounded by other Italian producers displaying, honey, cheese, salami, beer, vegetables, chocolate and a range of other products. Other sections of the fair included produce from all over the world including some from the UK, I must confess I was tempted by the Yorkshire sausages and had there been any stilton cheese I would definitely have weakened and bought some! There were also talks and demonstrations by the producers & tasting sessions going on throughout the day.

Because we had arrived with Stefano just before the fair began at 11am and stayed until 9pm (although the fair continued until 11pm) it proved to be a long day and we ended up seeking refuge in the enoteca where we enjoyed several glasses of wine! The entry fee to the enoteca was €4 which entitled you to a glass in a handy pouch so you could carry it around & 2 vouchers for glasses of wine, further vouchers could be purchased for €1 each! The wine list included almost 2000 wines, mainly from Italy & predominantly the Piemonte region, although wines from elsewhere in the world also featured. As well as a fantastic array of wine there was food for sale and demonstrations by pastry chefs in the dessert area where you could also enjoy a glass of desert wine!

We will definitely be attending next year and I would recommend it to anyone else with an interest in food and wine.


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