Scopello

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After the swimming in crystalline and fresh water, I feel my tummy’s rumbling. We go to Scopello to a nice dining place hidden in mountains. It looks like an old monastery with a courtyard, where some nice tables with big umbrellas have been arranged for guests. A waiter appears soon and starts an unbelievable discussion about food. “What do you have today?”, “Oh well, we have fresh sardines from the open sea caught between Eolian Islands and Sardinia this morning, so you can try them as antipasto <<Sardines a beccafico>> and <<buccatini con le sarde>> for the first dish, we have the best <<focaccia>> as usual, and <<focaccia riempita>> as well. For the second you can choose between different grilled meat or a plate of sea food fresh boiled with lemon: today we have big shrimps, squids and octopuses. For wine I recommend white dry with the saffron aroma, that arrived this morning”. As it seems, there is no need to look into the menu. It could be even a bad move to search something there, better ask the waiter…

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There are other guys, friends of Angelo and Mauro that have joined in, so there is 8 of us now. Listening as they order everything that the waiter recommended, I realized I didn’t want to eat so much, I didn’t even believe I was able to, one plate of pasta would be quite enough for me. But evidently they could eat without an end in Sicily, three, four courses, and it would still be OK.

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Sarde a beccafico are delicious. It is a type of snack, fresh fish filled with mixture of herbs, grated cheese, pine nuts and bread crumbs are baked in the oven rolled up and fixed with a wooden stick. They are served cold, which could be surprising. One sardine and a plate of unforgettable pasta con le sarde, and I am absolutely full. I watch with consternation as our Sicilian fellows ask for desserts after their second meal. They seem absolutely fine eating for 2-3 hours and they still comment every single plate as it was helping them to consume.

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When it comes to paying, a surprise brings me to the ground… well, the bill has arrived, and they just split it in equal parts for everyone, as it appears to be their local custom. Wow! You can eat one piece of fish and pay for three courses others have taken…

So weird and risky it is to go eating out with Sicilians !!!

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