Fresh seasonal ingredients, passionate people and a hunger for good eats, all of these elements collaborated together to make a magical food evening at Cafe Calabria.
I was introduced to Specialty Produce through friends over at Catalina Offshore Products, and they not only provide produce to some of San Diego's best restaurants, but like Catalina, also have a retail front that sells to the public.
Last week, Specialty put together this event of tastes and Cafe Calabria could not have been a more perfect location.
I always have an amazing time at Calabria, whether it's an afternoon espresso, or a late night Sunday pizza with a glass of Sangiovese, the people always welcome you like an old friend and the inside foliage and nature elements make for a wonderful atmosphere.
The food oh the food!
Chef MJ (head chef at Calabria) and the chefs from Bracero Cocina really did an incredible and creative job with the dishes that evening. At some point, when everyone was out in the garden area, my friend and I found the lonely Tuna crostini and meatball trays and had quite the sampling of them. The merriment between the insanely fresh and tasty tuna with the aioli and dill, and the tender meatballs with roasted garlic and vegetables, had me in a whirlwind of food drunken happiness.
Another favorite was this samphire salad with beets and radish. I absolutely loved how bright this dish was, and could not stop eating the beets and radish.
At the end of the evening, we headed upstairs for a bit of espresso and what I initially thought was a donut decorated with berries, come to my surprise it was a perfect dessert peach!
But as always, the best parts of the evening, were getting to talk to the chefs, food lovers and providers, learning about their passion, how they came to where they are and what their favorite foods are.
So, when "the world seems to shine, like you've had too much wine (or espresso, pizza & tuna)
Till next time, Mangia Bene!
Say hello to some of San Diego's awesome food people.