The cuisine of Tuscany was born of poverty, cucina povera, and where regional favorites can change within a several kilometer radius from city to mountains to sea. The country has been touched by immigrants, their ingredients, and cuisines. Simplicity illustrates iconic dishes of crostini di fegatini - a chicken liver pate, ribollita, a cooked down vegetable and bread soup, and the famed “Bistecca alla Fiorentina” – a rare steak from a special breed of cow, the Chianina. Wild game and boar also figure prominently into the cuisine. Castagnaccio, a traditional cake made with chestnut flour, is common in Appennine mountainous area of Tuscany.
Highlights of the team’s trip and where they’ll find inspiration come from plates of braised lettuce with pistachio cream, wild boar ragu with a chocolate pasta, a modern scallop with watermelon dashi, fig leaves enveloping walnut and gorgonzola, and a raviolo with black truffle, egg, and ricotta. The creative challenge facing the culinary team will be finding a balance between the simple but big flavors of Tuscany with an elevated fine dining experience.
Anticipate a lineup of seasonal produce to staccato the menu including tomato, mushroom, cabbage, chestnuts and walnuts, figs, and naturally, truffles. Courses of shellfish, rabbit, and beef cheeks will make a likely appearance as well, along with pecorino, dried fruits, and the Tuscan biscotti known as cantucci, finding their way onto cheese and dessert dishes.