Saturday, January 19, 2008

Dinner with David

If someone had told us last summer while we were driving through Texas - four of us in the Jeep and trailer munching on truck stop snacks - that we would be flying to Italy in January to organize a dinner for a hot NYC men's wear designer, I'm not sure we would have believed it. But we wouldn't have been adverse to the idea.

And so there we were, spending the first week and a half in Tuscany, visiting a winemaker, a butcher, a baker, olive tree farmer and a sheep farmer who would all be providing for Adam Kimmel's honorary dinner at Pitti Immagine Uomo 73 in Florence. And what a grand time it was: imagine the fun in hearing about (through broken Italian/English and translation from our dear photographer/translator friend Andrea Wyner) these amazingly well-treated pigs of the Chini brothers with the best view in Tuscany. Or tasting sheep cheese, wine, sausage and head cheese in the hills of Rufina. Fantastic. With these ingredients Jim and the team at Convivium designed a beautiful menu that featured our new friends of the region:

Vincenzo, Cesare and Lorenzo Chini of Macelleria Chini (Vincenzo top left)
Enrico and Vania Di Marino of Licciolo (Enrico top center)
Carlo and Sabrina Giovanni of Flor di Pane (Sabrina top right)
Pamela Sheldon Johns of Poggio Estrusco (bottom photo)
Fabio and Francangelo Eleuteri of Fattoria di Tignano

Curator Neville Wakefield along with curator Francesco Bonami had invited Jim to Florence to organize the event as an Outstanding in the Field type dinner, but also as an Art Dinner. This is a new (and new favorite) concept for Jim, which materialized into a beautiful sand drawing-like table in amongst the statues at Gypsoteque of the Instituto D'Arte Porta Romana. A truly phenomenal view from the second story windows:

Thank you so much to Adam, Lapo, Anna, Francesca, Beatrice, Neville, Aimee and everyone who helped in this magical evening - it was a great pleasure!