PIEDMONT: MUGS AND … BICERIN

PIEDMONT: MUGS AND … BICERIN

I am delighted to receive this photo for the categhory journey from mug to mug

I sincerely thank Valeria: her cute mug comes from Piedmont.

I can do it, and I will, but after the coffee.

Basically a mantra printed on the mug.
Encouragement with every sip.
What to say? Perfect!

In Piedmont there is a place of the heart for me: Novara, a city that holds important moments of my life.

But Valeria sparked my interest in another place in particular.

A place where a very special drink is served in glasses without handles… bicerin, in fact.

I’m talking about the legendary Caffè al Bicerin since 1973 in Turin. 

Here is Valeria’s Bicerin!

I don’t know about you but I feel a sudden desire to taste it 🙂

Valeria told me that it should be drunk as it is served: that is, without mixing it.

The Bicerin is in fact composed of three basic ingredients: coffee, cream and chocolate … good company no doubt about it 🙂

Obviously, however, Bicerin is much more than that, and it is above all history.

The story of an eighteenth-century drink made up of three different separate glasses, almost as if for a sort of ritual, which over time has evolved into the current version that brings together n poc ‘d tut.

Story also told in the Virtual Museum of Turin. 

History of a drink that boasts illustrious admirers.

Umberto Eco tells it in The Prague Cemetery:
… I had gone as far as one of the legendary places of Turin at the time. Dressed as a Jesuit, and enjoying the amazement I aroused with malice, I went to Caffè Al Bicerin, near the Consolata, to take that glass, which smelled of milk, cocoa, coffee and other aromas. I still didn’t know that even Alexandre Dumas, one of my heroes, would have written about the bicerin a few years later, but in the course of two or three raids in that magical place I had learned all about that nectar …

Nectar gives a pretty good idea, don’t you think?

KEEP CALM AND GO … BOOKCROSSING

KEEP CALM AND GO … BOOKCROSSING

Keep calm and go… bookcrossing is the new creation by Keep calm and go volunteering  team.

In the picture their box inaugurated on Monday 28 March, isn’t it delicious?

It is located in the Cairoli Park, in via del Piave, in Belluno

If one day maybe you find yourself in the area …

What do you think of bookcrossing?
Have you ever donated or collected books?

Speaking of the guys from Keep calm and go volunteering, on the subject of books, Lorenzo gave me a new precious advice!

Un altro giro di giostra by Tiziano Terzani.

Do you know him?

I really hope to read it soon: Lorenzo particularly emphasizes the considerations regarding coffee and the way it is drunk while we work, a sign of a frenetic society.

I found this excerpt:
With the streets populating immediately after dawn, New York lost its enchanted air to my eyes and at times it appeared to me as a monstrous jumble of many desperate people, each one running after some dream of sad wealth or miserable happiness. By eight, Fifth Avenue, south of Central Park, a stone’s throw from my house, was already full of people. Whiffs of airport perfumes filled my nose at every woman who, running with the usual breakfast packet in hand, brushed past me to enter one of the skyscrapers. What a way to start a day! I was thinking of the Florentines who, upon entering the Petrarca Bar in Porta Romana, do not simply order a “coffee”, but a “high” coffee, or a “macchiato” one in a “glass” or in a “cup,” a creamy cappuccino without foam or «A heart of coffee in glass» and I thought of the young Francesco who pays attention to everyone’s tastes. For most in New York, the coffee is an acid soup placed in a paper cup with a plastic pacifier-shaped lid to be able to sip it, still hot. Walking.

This is surely linked also to the famous “first coffee of the day” and to the favorite way of having breakfast we were talking about.

The cup in the photo below, on the other hand, has nothing to do with breakfast, it is taken from: The Duke, another precious tip from Lorenzo, this time cinematic.

Do you agree this is a very sweet image?
Do you already know this movie?

And what would you recommend to Lorenzo and the volunteers?

BEFORE YOUR MEMORY FADES

BEFORE YOUR MEMORY FADES

Before your memory fades … but the Italian title is The first coffee of the day… could I not read it?

Actually no, and that’s why my husband decided to give it to me.

Before your memory fades is the new book by Toshikazu Kawaguchi 川口 俊 和 published in Italy by Garzanti.

Do you know him?

I was very impressed to discover how Toshikazu Kawaguchi here in Italy has established himself thanks to the word of mouth that has been unleashed since March 2020, when his book Before the Coffee Gets Cold debuted and finished in the bestseller list within a week.

In fact, going backwards, about Toshikazu Kawaguchi

March 2012: the Grand Prize of the Suginami Theater Festival for the stage “Before the Coffee Gets Cold”

December 2015: the novel “Before the Coffee Gets Cold” published

April 2017: the Grand Prize Bookshop nomination

September 2018: cinema adaptation of “Before the Coffee Gets Cold” with Kasumi Arimura

February 2019: 100,000 copies of “In front of cold weather” exceeded in Taiwan

February 2020: the UK version of “Before the coffee gets cold” is 10th in the Bookseller ranking

March 2020: the British version wins the first place in the best-selling literary books in Singapore

until May 2020: his biography mentions a 3rd place as a novel translated in Italy in the ranking of the Corriere della Sera that I have not been able to recover

January 2021: Tales from the Cafe.

Autumn 2021: the project for a TV series  produced by SK Global and developed by The Jackal Group

And January 2022: Before your memory fades.

I don’t want to anticipate the focal point of these coffees nor what happens while the coffee is hot, in case you don’t know the story yet, but surely the idea of these special encounters over a cup of coffee is the key concept here on the blog too.

Unfortunately, without the magic and the Japanese delicacy, and with very different cooling times, but with the same intent to try, very modestly, to give small trips.

And about the first coffee of the day would you like to tell yours?

TRIESTE COFFEE ASSOCIATION

TRIESTE COFFEE ASSOCIATION

Trieste Coffee Association is one of the few associations still active and is third in Europe.

Staying on the trend of coffee in Trieste it was really very interesting to learn more about the supply chain.

For this I must say THANK YOU to Fabrizio Polojaz President of AssoCaffè Trieste for the availability and courtesy with which he illustrated every single aspect that connects Trieste to coffee in a total way.

COFFEE FOR TRIESTE IS HISTORY

Trieste has always been a harbor city, as we know it is not remembered as particularly influential: we rather know the magnificence and power of Venice. But between 1710 and 1720 Trieste found “a protector:” Vienna. The Austrian Empire has become a continental empire and decides to create its own merchant port in Trieste.

At the end of 1700, with the sunset of the Serenissima the second important step: the competition was interrupted.

Third crucial point: the construction of a “southern” railway (with respect to Austria), to allow goods unloaded from ships to leave by train to arrive in Vienna within a day.

The fourth important progress takes place with the construction of the Suez Canal: the entrance into the Mediterranean no longer requires the passage through the Pillars of Hercules, and, directly from the Aegean, the way to Trieste is short, as well as favorable.

Even today Trieste is the northernmost harbor in the Mediterranean.

Here you will find an original print from the Dino Cafagna collection illustrating Triste in 1719 before the free port.

COFFEE FOR TRIESTE IS A PRODUCTION CHAIN

As we all know, coffee is not grown in Europe, but grows in the tropical belt: equatorial Africa, Asia, India, Central America and South America.

I quote the words of the President Fabrizio Polojaz:

these goods create knowledge, knowledge creates profession and profession creates supply chain.

This chain begins with the financial part: that is, banking institutions for the purchase, and insurance companies with very specific policies.

Logistics plays an essential role starting with the forwarding agents because obviously we are talking about long-distance transport, but it also includes warehouses for conservation, processing for the improvement of the raw material, and phytosanitary management.

A first transformation is carried out by the roasting companies, which are about fifteen in Trieste.

There is also an industry for decaffeination (there are only nine in all of Europe).

And also chemical laboratories, tasting, experts, training schools and various equipment sector.

COFFEE FOR TRIESTE IS A MEETING POINT

Three European language families:

Latin
Slavs
Germans

three preparations:

for Italians moka and espresso
for Nordic filter coffees
for the Balkans, Turkish and Greek coffee

again, I quote the words of President Fabrizio Polojaz verbatim

People from Trieste are spoiled consumers, and lovers of good coffee.

And again, paraphrasing Nino Manfredi’s historic and unforgettable commercial

coffee is recharging, even spiritual and if the coffee is not good … what pleasure is it?

How can we disagree?

Among other things, it must be said that Trieste consumers are not only “spoiled:” compared to a national average per capita consumption of about 5 kilos per year, the Trieste average reaches almost 10!

Not bad really.

But what’s even more fantastic is theirs… how can we call it?

Nomenclature? I would say no: it’s not exactly technical terminology.

Code? Nor, code is too “mathematical.”

Peculiarities? But it sounds not very poetic to me.

In short, they have their special habit, of asking for a NERO when they want to order an espresso at the bar, just as Nick also told us in the comments about his professor.

When I asked the President Fabrizio Polojaz if there is a particular reason for “nero” he replied simply: to fondle.

However, it is not just a question of nero, apparently the bartenders in Trieste have something more to learn than the others: are you ready?

The typical cappuccino does not exist in Trieste.

For the milk and coffee drink we are used to thinking about, we order caffellatte.

CAPO, is also shortened in size: small cup or glass.

But if it were a glass, then it would be CAPO IN B, obviously, right!?

Don’t you immediately feel like trying, even considering what Luciana told us here

Finding ourselves “at the cafe,” it is natural to ask for an opinion also regarding the increase in the price of coffee, so much criticized almost everywhere.

In this regard, the President of Assocaffè Trieste invites us to take a look behind the scenes.

The cup represents a series of very long steps: after cultivation, the coffee is stripped, processed, kept in silos, treated in parchment, bagged and shipped.

At its destination, further selections are made, it is roasted and blended, because the coffee is the result of the composition of different qualities, before reaching the barista who grinds and presses it.

All these are the items that make up the bill.

The last two years, so difficult for everyone and everything, have been problematic from the point of view of cultivation, which has suffered production drops caused by the difficulty of harvesting the coffee at the right time.

And there is not only a shortage of good quality products, there is also logistical difficulty, both in terms of traffic: after the long period of inactivity everyone wants to ship, and in terms of costs that have literally increased tenfold.

But the considerable decreases in consumption and, last but not least, the organizational and managerial burdens that the barista had to adopt to fulfill the requests of the various DPCMs were also affected.

So it is worth defending quality and work, do you agree?

COFFEE FOR TRIESTE IS ALSO TOURISM

In addition to the historical cafes already mentioned that offer a unique experience to visitors, Trieste is organizing a coffee festival: the Trieste Coffee Festival, in addition to the professional Triestespresso Expo exhibition, and in particular the Coffee Trieste Association is working with tour operators.

The goal is to ensure that the knowledge they have gained, so deeply rooted in the territory, and characterized in full, can also be enjoyed by tourists.

Among other things, it is already possible to organize visits to coffee roasters to discover this important stage in coffee processing, for example.

What do you say at this point?

They can truly say they are the capital of coffee.

Although, rightly, Minister Centinaio in response to the tweet wrote that the dossier presented to Unesco involves the symbolic cities of coffee in Italy, including Trieste.

WHY HAS THE OLD NO LONGER VALUE?

WHY HAS THE OLD NO LONGER VALUE?

Old mug or new mug?
If you receive new cups, how do you deal with the old ones? Do you immediately stop using them, put them in the cupboard, do you get rid of them?
I do not do text, I have already described this feature of mine a little out of time.
Anachronistic. True.
And, in general, I find the guidelines originating from the evolution of many procedures increasingly incomprehensible.
For example, I do not understand the policy of the phone companies according to which favorable conditions and reduced costs are offered only to new subscribers.
If you have been a subscriber for years, your rates have risen over time but you cannot have the concessions reserved only for non-customers.
I do not understand why.
Or rather, of course, the reason is always the gain, this is a fact, but the meaning is equally elusive.
So we find ourselves being taken for granted, like the cups of all time, those that do not break, those that have passed decade, fashions and models.
You, who have always paid, for years, are not important, you are there, you’re for granted.
And, even on the day you stop being there, you will only be considered like a lemon to squeeze to the last penny under any pretext: without scruple they will continue to issue invoices to the bitter end, charging any type of cost that can be assumed.
Invoices addressed to a person who has been a customer since the days when telephones first entered homes, gray, with the big wheel and the wire.
Invoices addressed to a deceased person.
But respect is also dead.
Any reference to facts that really happened is by no means casual.

So is it worth continuing to be a new customer?
I’m asking.

 

 

Pin It on Pinterest