Marco Secchi Blog

Photojournalist in Slovenia and Hungary

Archive for the ‘Food and Wine’ Category

Human Fish Brewery

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Craft beer has been a rapidly growing trend around the world over the last several years, leading to the development of dozens of microbreweries, gastropubs and festivals devoted to nothing but a sheer love of a cold brew. While favorite pale lager options like Laško and Union are still available in every pub and brewhouse in Slovenia, the craft beer industry has made its mark, most notably with the adorably named Human Fish Brewery.

 

With a mission to bring the Western microbrewing tradition to Central Europe, Human Fish Brewery was founded in 2008 by an Australian graduate of the American Brewers Guild looking for a new market for great beer. The original brewery was located in Slovenj Gradec, a small town in the Lower Styria region, but has since moved to a centuries old dairy farm in Vrhnika, roughly 16 kilometers from Ljubljana. In addition to a larger and more historic space, the brewery’s new location boasts greater access for residents and tourists to the nation’s capital on the hunt for a refreshing beer crafted by a master brewer.

Getting to the brewery is easy, and groups of ten or more are able to make tap room reservations for €8.50 a person to take advantage of brewery tours and beer samples that make for a perfect weekend or weekday outing. In April, individuals will be able to drop by for a few pints on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, alone or with friends. Human Fish Brewery features a number of specialty craft brews, including stouts, lagers, and Slovenian IPAs, with rotating seasonal taps that change every few weeks. Whether you’re a local with easy access or a visitor to the area, there’s always something to try if you’re up to the journey.

Favorite Human Fish brews aren’t limited to the idyllic countryside of Vrhnika, however; many pubs in Ljubljana offer up craft brewed favorites on tap, including Katakombe Konoba, Zlata Ladjica, and Tozd. Whether you’re new to the beer game or are a lifelong aficionado of microbrews, Human Fish Brewery is one of Slovenia’s best destinations for a cold, frosty beer.

 

Human Fish Brewery  Tržaška 27, Vrhnika    

This post has not been sponsored and I did not get media samples or freebies. For more information, check out my full disclaimer policy.

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Written by msecchi

December 8, 2015 at 2:41 pm

Casatella Caseificio Zanchetta

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Casatella Trevigiana is an artisan, DOP, soft cows’ milk cheese from small farms in province of Treviso in the Veneto region of Italy. The origin of the name comes from the dialect Casatella Treviso, meaning “house or home” and refers to any product, cheese, bread, sausage, polenta, made in the family, and as such regarded as authentic and healthy.

Nowadays, Casatella Trevigiana is produced throughout the year thanks to mechanisation. It is a mild-flavoured cheese and is creamy, simple and delicate. It incorporates the features of tradition and innovation that make it one of the most popular dairy products with its fresh and nutritious qualities.

The Casatella from Caseificio Zanchetta includes a variety with Olives and one with Sun Dried Tomatoes….. both are fantastic!

The Caseificio Zanchetta is in Casale sul Sile not only sells Casatella but also wonderful cheeses and Salumi, Ham and Milk!!

 

This post has not been sponsored and I did not get media samples or freebies. For more information, check out my full disclaimer policy.

Written by msecchi

September 8, 2015 at 2:28 pm

Posted in Food and Wine

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S Daniele Prosciutto

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In the pre-Roman era, San Daniele del Friuli was an important Celtic settlement, thanks to its special position en route to Northeast Europe. The surrounding area contains the remains of various “castellieri”, the typical Celtic constructions used as watchtowers.

The Celts, a relatively non-migratory people, devoted to agriculture and with minimal warlike tendencies, were the first to use salt to preserve pork, of which they were major consumers. They built the foundations of the extraordinary rural culture which the Romans put to expert use later on.

In the era following that of the Celts, the oldest San Daniele settlement is Roman, from the 1st century AC: a villa positioned right on the summit of the hill.

The Romans were very familiar with ham: evidence of this can be found in the ancient merchants’ road to Rome, the present Via Panisperna, named after “panis” (bread) and “perna” (“perna sicca”: ham), and in a butcher’s memorial stone found in Aquileia (UD), which boasts a Prosciutto di San Daniele complete with trotter.

Embed from Getty Images

Fast forwards to the 1920 the first ham factories were established: the domestic cellar was transformed into the centre of a true autonomous production activity. At the end of the 40s, the ham factory had become an industry, and from the 60s its development resulted in some of the production companies contributing to the formation of the national and international prosciutto crudo market.

Written by msecchi

July 31, 2015 at 6:55 pm

Venice Real Osterie

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A selection of Venice Osterie where you can get wonderful food for 30Euro or less!
La Frasca

This is a small restaurant with just the owner and his chef. Pleasant, no-frills trattoria on a quiet residential square.
For a taste of tagliata di calimaro (sliced grilled squid) with arugula or pomodorini tomatoes with strawberries and violet artichokes, wend your way up quintessential calli to La Frasca. Far from the maddening San Marco crowds, this tiny eatery nestled on a remote campiello charms before you even taste the seafood sampler of grilled seppie cuttlefish, canoce mantis shrimp, excellent baccalà mantecato, or sarde in saor. Wines are an important part of the meal here; ask for a recommendation from the ample list of predominantly regional selections. With limited indoor seating, La Frasca encloses and heats their outdoor terrace to accommodate winter diners.

Address: Corte de la Carità, Cannaregio 5176, Venice, 30121
Phone: 041/2412585
Vaporetto: Fondamente Nove
No lunch Mon. and Wed.

Dalla Marisa

Signora Marisa is a culinary legend in Venice, with locals calling up days in advance to ask her to prepare ancient recipes such as risotto con le secoe (risotto made with a cut of beef from around the spine). Pasta dishes include the excellent tagliatelle con sugo di masaro (in duck sauce), while secondi range from tripe to roast stuffed pheasant. In summer, tables spill out from the tiny interior on to the fondamenta. Book well ahead – and remember, serving times are rigid: turn up late and you’ll go hungry. There’s a €15 lunch menu..

Cannaregio 652B,
fondamenta San Giobbe
Vaporetto Crea or Tre Archi
Telephone 041 720 211
Meals served noon-2.30pm Mon, Wed, Sun; noon-2.30pm, 8-9.15pm Tue, Thur-Sat. Closed Aug

Trattoria Ca’ D’Oro

“This picturesque osteria [informal restaurant or tavern] has a well-stocked cicchetti [small plate] counter plus small tables in the back if you order from the menu.”—Michela Scibilia, author, Venice Osterie. One of the oldest wine bars in the city and also known as Alla Vedova; popular with locals and travelers barhopping along Strada Nova; serves Venetian classics and is famous for its polpette (meatballs).

Cannaregio 3912; tel. 39 041 528 5324.

Osteria al Garanghelo

“One of the ever decreasing number of old-time Venetian osterie.”—Ruth Edenbaum, author, Chow Venice: Savoring the Food and Wine of La Serenissima. This simple, casual restaurant is low-key and local; cicchetti (small plates) up front and tables in back; wines by the glass; menu includes a vegetable antipasta platter, seafood starters like sarde in saor (Venetian-style marinated sardines), and pastas.

Close to Rialto market. San Polo 1570; tel. 39 041 721 721.

Dai Tosi (37)

If you’re stuck for somewhere to eat after a visit to the Art or Architecture Biennale and are in the mood for cheap and cheerful refuelling, this neighbourhood trattoria-pizzeria, in a residential street that always seems to be festooned with laundry, should fit the bill perfectly. In summer, when they put tables outside in the street, there are few more picturesque dining backdrops in Venice. The pizzas are fine and filling (try the gorgonzola, radicchio and walnut topping), and they also do a good range of Venetian and pan-Italian pasta dishes. This is a good place to come with kids, who can work up an appetite in the play area near the Giardini vaporetto stop. Beware of mixing this up with another nearby namesake restaurant; if you’re in any doubt, ask for ‘Dai Tosi Piccoli’ (Little Dai Tosi).

In summer, when they put tables outside in the street, there are few more picturesque dining backdrops in Venice.

In summer, when they put tables outside in the street, there are few more picturesque dining backdrops in Venice.

In summer, when they put tables outside in the street, there are few more picturesque dining backdrops in Venice.

Address: Castello 738, Secco Marina, 30122
Getting there: Vaporetto stop Giardini
Contact: 00 39 041 523 7102; trattoriadaitosi.comOpening times: Mon, Tue, Thu, midday-2pm; Fri-Sun, midday-2pm, 7pm-9.30pm
Prices: pizzas from €5, pasta dishes around €12
Payment type: credit cards accepted
Cuisine: Italian, pizza
Reservations: not necessary

L‘osteria Ai Assassini

Written by msecchi

July 2, 2014 at 1:24 pm

Zingy Gnocchi

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Gnocchi con burro, limone e ricotta

Gnocchi with butter with store-bought gnocchi must be one of the easiest recipes around. Even when you give it a fresh, lemony twist.

Gnocchi with ricotta.

This is a recipe pinched and adapted from the Italian version of La
Cucina Italiana. They start by making the gnocchi from scratch, but this
time I’ve bought them ready-made, which means you can make the dish in 5
minutes flat, provided of course you have some salted lemon. Otherwise
you might have to invest 10 minutes in the preparation of a very fresh
and delicious, vegetarian primo piatto.

 

Ingredients

 

1 lemon

2 tbsp salt

75 g butter

100 g ricotta

Fresh basil

salt, pepper

 

Preparation

 

Cook the lemon in boiling and heavily salted water for 15 minutes

Cook the gnocchi in boiling salted water until they pop to the surface

Meanwhile fry the butter until it becomes brown with a slight taste of nuts

Cut the lemon in four wedges, remove the flesh of one wedge, cut the peel in strips and add it to the butter

Mix the cooked gnocchi with lemoned butter, ricotta and leaves of basil before serving

The remaining lemon wedges are really good with white meat or in grain salads.

Written by msecchi

April 13, 2013 at 8:30 am

Posted in Food and Wine

Castradina

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The “castradina” is a stew, real comfort food, and is a traditional recipe that traces its roots in Dalmatia, where the dried, smoked mutton aromatized with herbs and spices came from. At a time when food deteriorated easily and could carry diseases, the “castrà” (a leg of castrated lamb) was a guarantee. This delicacy has to be prepared 2 days in advance and the “castrà” is available in the best butchers a week before the feast of Madonna della Salute. INGREDIENTS: CABBAGE CASTRA’ ONIONS, CARROTS ROSEMARY, THYME, LAUREL AND JUNIPER IN A GAUZE BAG EXTRA VERGIN OLIVE OIL

Thinly chop the carrots and the onions and stir-fry in olive oil. Add the cabbage slices into thin strips and simmer in low heat in little water (keep adding water when needed) with olive oil until soft. Bring to a boil the castrà in water with the herbs, let it simmer for about half an hour, then remove from heat, throw away the water where the castrà has been cooking, and complete the cooking in renewed water (otherwise it gets too salty). Put both the cabbage and the meat aside, somewhere cool. The next day, skim off the layer of grease, add the cabbage and simmer for an hour approximately. Serve it as a hot stew or a soup.

Written by msecchi

November 22, 2011 at 5:21 pm