Not quite a retrospective but an attempt to play catch up and get back to some regular posts. Where to start is a dilemma January or April, the latter being the start of the ‘Troffers’ journey and this web site, how time passes? Remembering foodie events from January to April 2008 is hazy but the highlights are memorable. Italy is always a favourite and a February ski trip to Breuil Cervinia discovered the Copa Pan a lively après ski bar with a excellent restaurant downstairs serving great pasta and local dishes. Not sure which months, but two local…ish favourites were visited, the Yorke Arms at Ramsgill in Nidderdale which in my opinion has the most consistent, quality dining experience and Sunday lunch is a must. The Sun Inn at Kirkby Lonsdale is also becoming an old friend which never disappoints. Some highlights from April and May are still in the Archives and things get going again in late June. Sirmione starts our summer with two of my favourite Italian ristorante / trattoria’s both located in what in my opinion is one of the most romantic locations ever … Sirmione on the base of Lake Garda. Antica Trattoria La Speranzina (www.lasperanzina.it) was visited on our wedding anniversary for the tasting menu which can be either from the land or lake/sea and either is an experience not to miss. When all the elements of atmosphere, quality food, wine and attentive service are put together in a special location it becomes a memorable evening and this was it. On the Saturday for dinner we visited another old favourite Ristorante Signori (www.ristorantesignori.it) again with a table at the lake side and were treated to another excellent dining experience this time with a firework display on the other side of the lake at Desanzano after the sunset. I have posted a few pictures but take a look at the web site links. After northern Italy we were soon in Portugal visiting our old friend Diogo at the Palladium in Guia for his prawn piri-piri washed down with Lancers rose, I am sure we posted this earlier along with Pier One at Villamoura and O’Teodosio again at Guia. Our fellow troffers Dawn and Gurdev then joined us for the rest of the holiday where we had a few days left in Portugal and then drove down to Seville. The culmination of the tour was two nights at the Hacienda Benazuza – El Bulli hotel in Sanlucar la Mayor (www.elbullihotel.com) to dine in Ferran Adria’s La Alqueria restaurant. Again this has been covered earlier by Dawn but to say the 28 course tasting menu was an experience which will probably never be equalled. To finish the experience memorable meals were had in Seville and a strange location involving Planes, trains and boats all at a little seafood restaurant on Faro harbour.
Moving on to autumn and winter one of our regular visits to Norwich coincided with the local food festival and highlights were the food theatre, local growers displays and a well attended sausage competition? A return visit to Adlard’s (www.adlards.co.uk) did not disappoint and the presentation and quality of food were excellent. Two thousand and ate was definitely a year of foodie experiences but despite all the great restaurants visited a mention has to go to the culinary talents of friends and fellow troffers which has provided some fantastic dining moments at respective homes throughout the year.