Parte 3: Modena and Parma

This is the next installment of our road trip around Northern Italy in September 2019. You can catch up on

Modena and Parma were undiscovered country for us. We’d been to Bologna before (ten years ago!). We’d heard good things about Emilia-Romagna and Italian cuisine from various sources — including our waiter at Colline Emiliane on our trip to Rome. But for all the famous foody aspects of this bit of Italy (balsamico, parmesan cheese, prosciutto), we’d never actually been. Well, why the heck not? We loved both these cities.

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great Thai food, weird desserts

Last night we had some excellent Thai food at Christina & Rainer‘s house together with Tammy & Matthias and temporary bachelor Alex. Christina’s mom is in town and brought with her all the culinary goodness in use at her restaurant (Tammy & Matthias can vouch for this; Sarah and I have not yet had the pleasure). I had my camera with me but didn’t take a single shot. Some video was recorded though, so we might see some of that later on. Trust me: it was excellent.

And then we got to the desserts.

This is not to say that the desserts were not good — at least I didn’t think so. They were just odd. First round was a scoop of plain vanilla ice cream with a big spoonful of high-quality extra-virgin olive oil sprinkled with fleur de sel. Umm… what? Yeah, seriously, olive oil and hand-harvested sea salt on vanilla ice cream. Try it yourself. The combination — not the flavor — reminded me of a dessert I had at Vitus around the corner from us during the World Cup a couple years ago: 12-year-old balsamic vinegar on fresh strawberries. It was weird, but it worked.

Next up: butter cake with lavender syrup or blueberry sauce. To put it gently: it would appear my passion for the lavender syrup is not shared (except by Sarah, over vanilla ice cream). Alex said, “hey, when you put it on the cake, it tastes a lot better than it smells!” by way of consolation.

Well, I liked it. And the blueberry sauce was just fine — next time I think I’ll cut the honey content back a third (or maybe that Langnese stuff Sarah bought is just extra flavorful?).