In May 2009, John and I traveled to Italy for five days. It was a last minute decision that all started with an email from Vayama and John saying, “Hey, do you want to go to Italy for a long weekend in a couple of weeks?”
Part of me thought he was kidding because we were still getting caught up with work after being in India the month before.
I realized he was serious when I looked up from my computer and saw a somewhat serious look on his face, along with raised eyebrows and a grin.
That’s when I started playing devil’s advocate and asked several questions knowing that even though this was the first time I’ve heard about it, that he’d been chewing on this for a few days. This sort of behavior is extremely common around here. We are constantly bouncing things off of each other when we want to make a business decision, go somewhere, or buy something.
Vayama was offering a flight on Delta from JFK to Pisa that was effectively half price compared to the price of the flight normally. John went directly to Delta’s website to search a few dates. Basically, it was too good of a deal to pass up.
The highlight of the trip was Sunday lunch in Panzano with the world’s most famous butcher, Dario Cecchini at the Officina della Bistecca:
Eating there was more of an experience than it was a lunch and it is difficult to find the right words to describe this one-of-a-kind 3 hour event.
From the minute we walked into the room we were treated like family. We took our seats at a long table across from the open wood grill and the largest cuts of beef I’ve ever seen.
The Main Character of the meal is Beef and Dario served up three different cuts including one of his own called the Panzanese:
Delicious sides accompanied the meal including Tuscan beans, baked potatoes, onions, and olive oil cake but the focus never strayed far from the much loved Leading Man, Beef. The table was filled with fresh raw vegetables, bread, local olive oil, many jugs of Dario’s Chianti and plenty of Italian Military liqueurs to go around.
This entire mind-blowing afternoon was a STEAL at 50€ per person.
The afternoon we spent with the guys in Panzano at the Officina della Bistecca was unlike anything we have ever experienced before.
Thank you Dario and Friends!