True Italian Club Tour 2011: San Francisco, California
Part 1: Intro
'True Italian Club' is a series of promo/informational events organized by Assist Group for the Ministero delle Politiche Agricole e Forestali, or the Italian Ministry of Agriculture in association with BuonItalia S.p.A., and AICIG (Associazione Italiana Consorzi Indicazioni Geografiche, or Italian Association of Geographical Indication Consortiums). The San Francisco event, which took place from Monday, January 17 to Wednesday, January 19, 2011, was the third stop of the North American Tour which started in Vancouver, BC, Canada, on February 22 and 23, 2010, and continued in Seattle from the 2nd to the 12th of November 2010.
The main goal of the True Italian Club tour is to inform local wine and food professionals, opinion makers, culinary school students about Italian products: how to recognize, how to buy, and how to use them. Given the widespread piracy concerning Italian food items, which in the US alone results in 30 million Americans eating fake Italian products, packaged, named and marketed to look Italian by using Italian flags and/or imagery in labels, as well as Italian sounding names, this type of itinerant informative meeting is more important than it may appear at first.
The San Francisco leg of the tour was hosted at the Foreign Cinema, a special place and cult restaurant in the Mission District area with the participation of local and out of state food experts and personalities, including Clark Wolf, who moderated the activities during the three days with great professionalism, yet a welcoming, down-to-earth, wit.
- Consorzio Tutela dell'Aceto Balsamico di Modena (balsamic vinegar from Modena)
- Consorzio Tutela dell'Aceto Balsamico di Reggio Emilia (balsamic vinegar from Reggio Emilia)
- Consorzio Tutela del Prosciutto di Parma (Parma ham)
- Consorzio Tutela del Prosciutto di San Daniele (San Daniele ham)
- Consorzio Tutela del Parmigiano-Reggiano (Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese)
- Consorzio Tutela del Grana Padano (Grana Padano cheese)
- Consorzio Tutela del Formaggio Asiago (Asiago cheese)
- Consorzio Tutela del Formaggio Piave (Piave cheese)
- Consorzio Tutela del Pecorino Romano (pecorino cheese from Rome)
- Consorzio Tutela del Pecorino Toscano (pecorino cheese from Tuscany)
- Consorzio Tutela del Caseus Montanus (cheeses produced above 600 meters [1,68.5 feet] of altitude, such as Fontina Val D'Aosta)
- Cantine e Distillerie Mangilli S.p.A. (wines and spirits from the Friuli region)
- Paolo e Noemia D'Amico (wines from the Latium region)
- Volio (extra virgin olive oil)
- Mazzetti L'Originale (balsamic vinegar from Modena IGP)
- Acetum (balsamic vinegar from Modena IGP.)
I was there to represent Cantine and Distillerie Mangilli, a well known Italian producer of grappa distilled spirits and original liquors such as the widely appreciated Mitica Mangilli, in addition to various lines of wines from native grapes, such as the Friulano (formerly Tocai) and Picolit, as well as international grapes, such as Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon, among others.