Dear Friend, 

Our dinner at Le Virtu' with Abruzzo Presto! and award-winning cookbook writer Domenica Marchetti will now also serve to debut Marchetti's latest book, Preserving Italy (all attending the dinner will receive a signed copy of the book).   

Francis Cratil

Le Virtù / Brigantessa

Dinner with Abruzzo Presto and Domenica Marchetti
Le Virtu' Wednesday, June 15: Dinner with Abruzzo Presto tours and award-winning food writer Domenica Marchetti 

On Wednesday, June 15 we'll be hosting Abruzzo Presto! and award-winning food writer Domenica Marchetti to celebrate Abruzzo and announce their joint September tour of the region and Domenica's latest book release, Preserving Italy. All attending will receive a copy of the book signed by the author. 

As many of you know, Cathy and I used to run our own culinary tours to Abruzzo. Introducing guests to the region that we had come to think of as a second home was a job we took seriously. Abruzzo is a 21st-century miracle, an oasis of peace, natural beauty and traditions. Abruzzo can't be appreciated with a day trip or cursory tour. It requires an experienced guide and time. Many of you have come to us and asked about traveling to Abruzzo, wanting to discover Europe's greenest region, Italy's unspoiled jewel. For all of you, this is your perfect opportunity.

Domenica Marchetti is our favorite food writer, particularly on Italy. Her familial roots are in Abruzzo. At a time when so much food writing seems to be just shallow hyperbole or about cooking viewed as competitive sport, Marchetti's  writing and  cookbooks  explore what's essential about cuisine. She has teamed with Abruzzo Presto!, run by Michael & Nancy Morizio, who live part of each year in Abruzzo to create culinary and cultural tours that we recommend without reservation. Michael Morizio's roots are in Abruzzo and he and Nancy have been living in and visiting the region for close to twenty years. They are serious students of history and art, with backgrounds in music. The tours they create are intimate (a maximum of 10 people), allow their guests to experience Abruzzo's singular cultural and geographic diversity, and permit the kind of experiences one simply doesn't find on a large package tour. With Michael and Nancy, personal relationships are formed - not just between them and their guests, but more significantly with the people of Abruzzo: its artisans, shepherds, farmers, wine and cheese makers and cooks. Domenica and the Morizios take as gospel our belief that cuisine is a window on culture, an enjoyable, rewarding way to come to know a people and their way of life. They proffer something precious to us with the kind of care and respect that serves the region and its people. 


Abruzzo Presto! offers services throughout the year, including the kind of personalized itineraries many of you have requested. Their next tour with Domenica departs on September 18, 2016. To spread the word about the tour and celebrate the publication of her latest book, Domenica and Chef Joe Cicala have created a 5-course menu featuring Abruzzese recipes from her latest cookbook with regional wine pairings. Each dish will take us on a culinary tour of the region. Michael and Nancy will be on hand to discuss the tour and their other services.

The event will be held on Wednesday, June 15th at 6 pm. The cost (for aperitivi, 4 courses and four wines and a copy of Preserving Italy) will be $100 (excluding tax and gratuity). 


Passed stuzzichini served with Cantina Frentana Cococciola Spumante

Selection of artisanal, unpasteurized Abruzzese cheeses and ricottine 
served with "le zolle" (pickled scapes in oil) and selected house-cured salumi
Pairing: Cantina Frentana Cerasuolo rose'
Assaggi dei primi
Ricotta gnocchi in tomato sauce

Maccheroni alla chitarra with a classic meat sauce of beef, pork and sausage
Pairing: Rubesto Riserva Montepulciano d'Abruzzo

Oven-roasted porchetta, with porchetta salt, 
grilled summer vegetables in savory mint sauce
Pairing: Panarda Riserva Montepulciano d'Abruzzo

Almond gelato with almond croccante
Pairing: Le Virtu' housemade digestivi

Wednesday, June 15th
6 pm
$100 (excluding tax and gratuity)
Limited seating: please c all 215.271.5626 to reserve

Le Virtu' 
1927 East Passyunk Ave. 
Philadelphia, PA 19148