All posts filed under: Stories From The Table

Coffee: A Manual

The third and final instalment of Dom’s Treatise on Coffee: The Manual – your guide to becoming a moka pot pro.  Last time I shared some of the reasons why I often reach for the moka pot when making coffee at home. Done right, it can get you damn close to a shot pulled for you in an a bar, and open up a world of delicious espresso-based drinks right in your own home. Done wrong it can end up a disappointedly bitter affair. Here are some tips for achieving a consistently delicious shot: For god’s sake keep it clean – I can understand why so many people believe the myth that you don’t need to clean a moka pot. It fits with that logic that you have to season cast iron, or that you should purchase a second hand wok if you can. You don’t want a seasoned moka pot. No soap needed, and you shouldn’t need to scrub it. But you do need to take it apart completely after each use, that means Read More

Coffee: The Little Machine

Welcome to the second part of Dom’s treatise on coffee. Here he talks all things moka – the history, the design, and the reasons you should own one. Grab a coffee and get comfortable. “Prodotto in Italia!” The Italians have good reason to be proud of the contributions they’ve made to the world, which is good, because they are. We have them to thank for such essentials as the radio, eyeglasses, and the parachute. Perhaps even more important than the parachute, at least for me anyway, are prosecco, Campari and Cinzano – a trinity for which I will be eternally grateful to the region we have called Italy for the last 156 years. And while you could very well argue that there have been some missteps along the way (Fascism probably wasn’t the best of ideas), a significant portion those still managed to be incredibly stylish at the same time as being unreliable (except Fascism, that wasn’t even stylish). But I’m here to talk about coffee. So onward towards my point. Modern coffee culture is Read More

A New Year

It is New Year’s Day 2018, and I have many important things to tell you. The first is that New Year’s Eve in Venice is wonderful, and made even more wonderful by spontaneous cocktails at the Danieli and making friends with everyone who works at your favourite local osteria. Next year, you should come. Come here to the Giardini, just before midnight, look out towards San Marco, and see the lagoon brought out of its inky darkness with fireworks. And before that, have a meal at Osteria Ruga di Jaffa – that local place I was talking about – it really does do unbelievable pasta. The second important thing isn’t really one thing, but many, all folded into Christmas. Things like preparing cicchetti on Christmas Day; going for a dog walk through the Suffolk wilderness in the midst of a storm; also, Nigel Slater’s pork and cranberry terrine, served as a starter for a Christmas Eve dinner. And of course, the unrivalled loveliness of watching It’s A Wonderful Life while baking bread; and Verona in December, Read More