Tag Archives: John Malkovich

Biting on the Big Apple

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by Filippo Bartolotta

I have to catch up with my diary as the following days will be packed with events and the current ones are over packed.

We got in NYC with the kids set up at the Love a lot school and everything has been going pretty well and smoothly aside the enormous amount of work that LEBACCANTI back office with Vanessa guiding everything with immense clarity and thoroughness; Barbara implementing all the actions, Carrie and Valentina co-ordinating from Florence Italy.

On my side I have been finishing off an article for Decanter Magazine and getting the last details in place for the Road show with a little morning run here and there to

check the neighborhood.

The second part of the week has been a little more crazy also for me as I had to get a group of wonderful “Italy at Your Table “wine selection to try with John Malkovich in occasion of the launch of his new artistic fashion creation.

I went to the Rivington Hotel to place all the bottles there while waiting for John.

I want to personally thank the following tremendous wine estates who made it to this awesome opportunity managing to get the bottle in time in only 24 hours!!!

Chianti Classico Riserva Castello di Monsanto 2006

Valiano Riserva 2006

Arnaldo Caprai Sagrantino di Montefalco 25 Anni

Isole e Olena Cepparello 2006

Proprietà Sperino Lessona 2005

Silvio Nardi Brunello di Montalcino 2004

Punset Barbaresco Campo Quadro 2004

Banfi Brunello di Montalcino 2004

Poderi Boscarelli Vigna il Nocio 2006

Tenuta Friggiali Pietra Nera 2004

While Barbara was getting the wines out of the extremely “secured” boxes, I was displaying the bottles on the pool table.

My son in the meanwhile was having fun in the most amazing candy shop in NYC which happens to be wright in front of  The Rivington Hotel: ECONOMY CANDY NYC.

We are trying to set up another event with John at the beginning of March, of course always with the TechnoBohemian underground noise!

Talking about underground…

Right after arranging the wines for John Malkovich, Vanessa and I set off to visit an underground Sushi place on the lower East side: Sushi Uo 151 Rivington St.

It is a tiny but quite glamorous place with great traditional Sushi dishes and more experimental ideas like the gnocchi with on a horse radish bed for instance.

It’s is a very romantic little restaurant very difficult

to find as it is in a private house.

Everything is really fresh and expressly made right in front of you by super Sushi master chef David Bouhadana. A very New Yorker that moves as fast as a Japanese cartoon: he has been a great host.

Not cheap and the music too loud for my taste, but great service and friendly hospitable approach with a very good Sake list!

Morning after this is time to hope on the train to Washington, but not before a little street band motivational music:

I’ll tell you more about the 48 hours in Washington DC where I have been having the most hectic and yet relaxing time with amazing helpful and interesting people. I’ll tell you more about Josè Andres and ThinkFood in the next blog because right on arrival with Alice’s assistant (super sweet) Sarah I started off right with a tasting at the Miller’s the CEO of Josè Andrés ThinkFoodGroup.

Starting from my zen artist host Dhalia and her tremendous wooden American house in Kenwood.

…to atomic Jan Bhurgman, Joane Nathan and Robert Morrison and all the great volunteers and hosts of the Sunday Night Supper Event.

Now I am in Kansas City where I am dashing off to start the first official date of ITALY AT YOUR TABLE.

I am a little nervous although Kevin and Gina are looking after me realllllllly well.

Also, last night with Alice Waters I got a clicking inspirational moment which is still lingering with my tastings of the Italy at Your Table Wines that she loved so much: her aura is simple and yet never lasting: thank you Alice!

Tomorrow I’ll tell you about the Dinner at Joane Nathan’s with all the celebrity chef and of course Alice Waters.

Go to go…

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Italy at Your Table kicks off!

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Italy at Your Table kicks off!

by Filippo Bartolotta

So here we are in the US for a few months.

I broke my camera, so I haven’t been uploading too many pictures recently, but I’ll get one in the next couple of days.

Meanwhile I have a Milo and Daphne getting ready for School:)

Milo seems to be born in the Big Apple. We found a place near China Town, in a lovely neighborhood and an amazing school: “Love a Lot Children School”. Milo is so happy that when we go to pick him up he doesn’t want to leave!

I am not over jet lag and so i taking it easy at the moment with few walks in the blue sky winter NYC sunny days.

Taking the children to school at 0800 in the morning is awesome. Everything is quite, at every cross road there’s a kind person checking that car stop, saying hello to the kids, then steaming coffee shops are offering the best beagles in the world: the New York Bagels!!!

Daphne would eat half on the way to school, which is only a few blocks away from home: Milo instead bounces around like a small kung-fu hero! His mood is 110%, I think he feels the Big-City’s energy.

While the kids are in school, Vanessa, Barbara and I instead are working in a near by coffee place, where our cups are refilled every hour!

I got to NYC after the big dinner with John Malkovich and the TechnoBohemian gang and the TB wines.


Technobohemian Wines

for TB minds

By Filippo Bartolotta

The Wines

After sharing some thoughts about wine, food and life-enjoyment with Pierpaolo Moroni and Simone Ramilli along the lines of John Malkovich’s  new collection and the TB movement, I have selected a few fine wines for you to savour.  The result isn’t just a gathering of fine bottles, but the participation of great men and women wine makers in this extraordinary project.

Elvio Cogno

Following in the steps of the mythical Elvio Cogno, Valter Fissore and his wife Nadia Cogno produce one of the very best Barolo wines. Barolo Vigna Elena 2004 and Barolo Bricco Pernice 2005 are extraordinary examples of two totally different wines coming from adjacent vineyards.

Le Sorgenti

Filippo and Christian have been working for a few years to revitalize a project initially started by Filippo’s father. Today they have successfully gotten the attention of the top Italian oenologists without loosing simplicity and independence of thought. Their style is best shown in their Scirus, a warm, dense and structured wine with incredible aging potential.

Mattia Barzaghi

A worker in the wine cellar for many years, Mattia finally found his own way by producing one of the most flavorful, succulent and mineral Vernaccia di San Gimignano ever produced in the shadow of the “city of a hundred towers”. An extraordinary interpretation with force and expressiveness.

Petriolo

An old and authentic Tuscan farm house in the remote hills of Empoli, with a wine cellar which still has

cement fermentation vats that were used before the over take of steel. Here, in this lesser known area, they produce a Sangiovese with a pure determination and thickness that surprises everyone with its perseverance and elegance.

Stefano Amerighi

Young Stefano has been drinking and tasting the best Syrahs in the world for over 10 years. Now he

produces his own in the countryside around Cortona. He has chosen to produce his wine according to the

biodynamic method to respect nature and with the ultimate goal of bottling the purest fruit possible!

Tenuta delle Ripalte

Piermario Meletti Cavallari has a highly refined palates and a free mind. After having launched and made famous the Grattamacco Estate in Bolgheri, he now has a new and even more difficult undertaking on the Island of Elba. Here he is producing a unique sweet red wine with hints of berry and a little saltiness!

Tenuta di Fessina

Musumeci is born from the lava covered slopes of Mount Etna. A juicy, succulent, rich and mineral red wine with incredible drinkability. In just a few years, Silvia Maestrelli has successfully used his Tuscan experience in Sicily with mastery and wisdom.

Terra al Sole

Eclectic Mario Bollag is the owner of one of the southern most wineries in Montalcino. His indipendent spirit results in a spectacular dense, smooth Brunello packed with fruit.

Grattamacco

One of the oldest and most well respected Super Tuscan wines. From the pristine hills of Bolgheri, two miles from the sea, this is a wine of structure and austere class.

Le Baccanti SELECTION OF FINE

ITALIAN WINES AND FOODS

Elvio Cogno Barolo Ravera 2005

Elvio Cogno Barolo Vigna Elena 2004

Terralsole Brunello di Montalcino 2004

Le Sorgenti Scirus 2006

Mattia Barzaghi Vernaccia di San

Gimignano 2008

Villa Petriolo Golpaja 2006

Stefano Amerighi Syrah 2006

Tenuta delle Ripalte Alestico 2006

Tenuta di Fessina Musumeci Etna Rosso

2007


Simone Ramilli and Alessandra Ofir Ortolani the inventors of the TechnoBohemian  have also put together the new TechnoBohemian Blog: http://roqkrealitybook1.wordpress.com/, go and check it out if you like and follow all the new adventrues here!

All of the wines above where  tasted and then drunk by the TB Group including the Designer - philosopher Riccardo Rami: www.riccardorami.com; Alex from Abaco: www.gruppoabaco.it and of course the Simone, Alessandra, Rosalba.

John loved the wines and we carried on till 3 in the morning!

Here John,  Imai  and myself.


Just before dinner we spent the afternoon in Riccardo Rami’s Studio which is a super Zen open space where I will be soon doing a wine tasting.

For our TB WINE MAKERS amazing news: Riccardo Rami was a teetotaler till he met me and your wines.

When in March I am back from the US we will put together a very cool tasting evening: thank you Riccardo for your magic words of wisdom (by the way I am way taller then you…ha!ha!).

The evening with John was very enjoyable, long but enjoyable.

John is like a Diesel engine that never stops. He has track loads of inspiring stories.

I like his way to tell stories, following his direction, then pausing to listen to people and changing his direction a bit to the left, then some else is pushing to the right and he is listening and adjusting.

He remembers everyone and everything and handles everything personally with no middle men what ever the business!

He has a passion for cinema and literature I discovered while sipping the first glass of Mattia Barzaghi’s Vernaccia: Pasolini is still one of the most independent and unique writer we have ever had, he says.

From Pasolini we jump in a second to Anna Politoskaya, then Mastrojanni and Catrhine Deneuve: the TRUTH was the thin red line of our conversation. At this stage Silvia’s Nerello Mascalese Tenuta di Fessina opens the red wines tasting. John ask if that was an Italian Pinot, giving me a clear clue that he has an idea of what good wine is about. Musumeci was a little cold for me, but he likes red wines that way. Massimilia at Ratz Mataz in Prato brings some nibbles while we are waiting for the rest to join Rosalba, John, Pierpaolo and me. John is never late.

Moving on to Petriolo, Silvia’s Sangiovese John show again to be able to appreciate fine wines with quick snappy descriptors while having a bite to eat: this has tighter tannins, but is still very good.

We open Mario Bollag Terra al Sole Brunello 2004: a deep, clean fruit and smooth Brunello.

Mario just managed to get away from a major heart-quake  in Haiti where he spent an important part of his life and where he found inspiration for a lot of good things in his life and for his wines too.

If you buy any of Terra al Sole wines he will give away €20 per  each bottle plus his giving 300 bottles to contribute for this cause. If anyone wants to help send an email to Mario: mario@terralsole.com

John and I manage to talk about the TB wines. On the 19th of this month we will be tasting here in NYC some TB wines to decide how to dress them with new John Malkovich designer’s label.

Barolo Cogno Vigna Elnea 2004 and Bricco Pernice 2005 need decanting as they were too tight. Meanwhile everyone arrives and so we start ordering some food. John never stops talking and telling people interesting stories and anecdotes of his personal life and professional one.

Vigna Elena seemd easier to drink from the beginning while Bricco Pernice, unlike John, needs some serious oxygen to start talking, but then is a true pleasure.

We end our dinner with overwhelmingly energetic Amerighi’s Syrah 2006: everyone love it and here again we had to open more then one bottle to make sure we got the point across: finally we get it!

The day after is the preparation of John’s show at Museo Pecci.

He is always calm, looking after every single detail on his own. I have to say that I was a little skeptical about Malkovich’s fashion line with Rami. I though: this is another VIP brand adventure with neither content nor soul.

I am not a big fashion guy, but his creations are just like him: eclectic, kaleidoscopic, decadent, romantic, karmic and full of life and color. It’s like all his characters, films, trips, dreams are condensed into his creations. Riccardo has been working really hard to make John’s dream come true, and now it is happening.

So now its time to celebrate and enjoy it.

Thank you John for sharing all that with us.

See you soon,

filippo

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Tecnobohemian Wines

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Yesterday I had the family and Le Baccanti hopping on flight to NYC.

I was meant to be there with them for the beginning of “Italy at Your Table” Road Show.

I will kick off my Italian Wine Challenge evenings in the US, on the 23rd in Kansas City at the Culinary Institute, then the 24th in Washington with the atomic Joan Nathan, Alice Waters, Jan Buhrman, Robert Morrison for a huge charity event.

After the Washington event I’ll be over to Martha’s VIneyard, Boston, Cincinnati, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Paolo Alto, San Diego, Santa Barbara and then NYC.

Throughout this event I’ll introduce over 1000 people to a group fo amazing Italian Producers.

Among them I have some Tecnobohemian Wines and above all a Tecnobohemian philosophy  with me.

This is the reason why I am still in Florence, to present Tecnobohemian Wines to John Malkovich supporting Simone Ramilli’s Roqk Novel which is the foundation of the whole project.

I was involved in all this thanks to Chef Pierpaolo Moroni and his make happen-girlfriend Rosalba and of course Simone Ramilli and Alessandra Ofir Ortolani – the magic pen!

Got to dash off for a dinner with Jhon and all the TB minded to present the TB WINES.

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Christmas comes but once a year…with "Italy at Your Table"!

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Christmas comes but once a year…with “Italy at Your Table”

by Filippo Bartolotta

Christmas comes but once a year and since the arrival of the two monkeys in the old mill, we have decided to make it a big children moment.

Every year we build a green Christmas tree picking branches from the woods around the house and decorating them with various wild berries and leaves and then adding up the most beautiful Christmas balls made by Catia Massai in Barberino.

I buy one a year  to pull them out every Christmas. Artisan products last longer then us, they are all unique pieces and they give a special touch to our home.

And so when opening that refreshing and invigorating liquid that we all love during this time of the year one fills even more pampered and loved.

Usually now is when I manage to take a break, relax and enjoy a slower working peace. But this year is different.

Last summer Vanessa and I decided to organize a long winter break  to the US.

As we were telling friends&family, clients&suppliers about it we begun to realize that we were bound to put together some wine tasting events as we were going along.

So one of our older customers calls us to book an evening, then is time for another and in a couple of months a thirty dates road show was set around the US.

All of a sudden the couple of wine tasting to some of our private collectors and clients became a huge project now called “Italy at Your Table”.

The idea is to get a group of 20-30 friends to gather around one of their homes with me presenting some of Italy’s finest wines in the most friendly way possible. Once the first dates were set and the first wineries signed up for it we understood that Benedetta Vitali from the Zibibbo Restaurant would have gone for a cooking road show on the same period: in a blink of an eye, rather then Tasting with Filippo or Cooking with Benedetta, now is both experiences at once.

This has given the whole project a new boost up. And now we are going to be holding evenings not only with our precious and faithful clients but also at famous restaurants, like Rialto in Boston or Quince in San Francisco.

On top of this in Washington, together with the great Chef Alice Waters,  Tom Colocchio, Josè Andrès and the atomic food&wine journalist Joan Nathan, we will be part of a big charity event “SUNDAY NIGHT SUPPER“. Here LeBaccanti and all the Italian Producers with us will try to make the difference! I’ll be up-dating all this with more details as I go ahead, of course.

These the magic wineries and producers which are kindly and proudly part-taking at this great adventure.

LeBaccanti will of course give a more “serious” account of all the events and press release.

Aceto Balsamico Malpighi

Arnaldo Caprai

Banfi

Bindella

Bruno Giacosa

Casa Vinicola Luigi Cecchi e Figli

Castell’inVilla

Castello di Monsanto

Cesani

Cogno

Col d’Orcia

ColleMassari

Consorzio Prosciutto di Parma

Fattoria di Cusona

Ferrari-Lunelli

Fontodi

Fratelli Revello

Gigi Rosso

Giovanni Panizzi

Grattamacco

Il Palagione

Il Solatione

Isole e Olena

Latium Amarone

Massolino

Mauro Molino

Marchesi Gonzaga-Tenuta di San Leonardo

Montevetrano

Poderi Boscarelli

Proprietà Sperino

Punset

Silvio Nardi

Terra al Sole

Tenuta delle Ripalte-Meletti Cavallari

Tornesi

Valiano


Our home is going to be the East-Village in NYC next to a lovely kindergarden for Milo and Daphne.

I will though be spending most of my time on the plane or opening bottles of wine:)

This is a very exciting project that was embraced by almost all of the people I have spoken to with the most up-lifting and energetic approach. Another time, in another post, I’ll give a more precise account of everything with the credits to each and everyone who helped making all this happen.

Actually another little great news coming from Italy at Your Table is related to the Techno-Bohemian movement with John Malkovich, Simone Ramilli, Pierpaolo Moroni. I was asked to join in the group as the wine-guru and so more news to come from this new big project.

Very soon the real thing…

Meanwhile these were my Christmas presents which I had with great joy and pleasure.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to everyone!

Tenuta di Fessina-Musumeci 2007 (magnum)

Juicy and peppery wine with a perfumed nose and a perfect cranberries and cherry velvet palate. Very easy to finish even the double size bottle!

This is the first and well executed  attempt of Silvia Maestrelli of the Tuscan Petriolo Estate in Etna. A few years ago she kicked off with the reserved help of Federico Curtaz.

Chianti Classico Il Solatione 2006

This is one of the rare examples of pure, simple Sangiovese fruit at its best. A wine with an amazing alcoholic balance, smooth tannins and plenty of depth for a regular Classico from a small and cute family run Azienda Agricola.

Barbaresco Punset Barbaresco 2004

Awesome vintage for the only organic estate in Barbaresco. Marina Marcarino has been starting this adventure alone with a great energy and motivation which is somehow dripped into her wines: rich and savory this Barbaresco with plenty of complex earthy tones and clean fruit.

Tenuta Friggiali Brunello PIetranera 2003 (double Magnum format)

A massivily black cerry packed Brunello with a lot of leathery and tobacco complexity.

Very rich and quite hot palate with a lengthy licorice and forrest fruit finish.

This is the open friendly South-East vineyard Brunellos of the Centolani family in Montalcino.

Tenuta delle Ripalte Aleatico dell’Elba 2006 and 2007

Here comes the end of the Holiday dinners with one of Italy’s most respected wine makers. Piermario Meletti Cavallari after making his Super Tuscan Grattamacco famous around the block he sold it and begun a new venture in the Island of Elba in Tuscany to make an extremely difficult wine: Aleatico Passito. Its a red dessert wine with plenty of juicy refreshing character of forrest fruit and hezelnuts combined with a touch of crounchy chocolaty mouth-fill. The ’06 has got more vanilla and structure, the ’07 is more on the jucy savory fruit. A delight with the Marron Glacè from the Badiani Pasticceria!

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