The night of San Lorenzo is celebrated in Italy on August 10th. Since this date coincides with the annual appearance of the Perseids meteor showers, there is a tradition that says if you wish on a shooting star on this night, then your wish will come true.
We had our own celebration of the Night of San Lorenzo in Gilroy, CA organized by Finaldy Special Events and Catering.
This magical evening was held on the LaVigna Patio at Hecker Pass Winery, a beautiful natural setting that was enhanced by beautiful decorations designed by Monica Filice, owner of Finaldy.
There were welcoming Mimosa cocktails accompanied hors d'oeuvres that included tuille cups of Parmesan cheese filled with asparagus creme, artisinal salame, nuts and cheese.
The chef of the evening was Fulvia Steffenone from Torino, Italy. Also known by her nickname, La Fufi, Chef Steffenone has impressive
credentials that include consulting to the Italian government, contributing to magazines such as Cucina Italia,cookbook author and restaurateur. However, the only bona fides we needed that evening was the outstanding menu that she prepared in traditional courses.
The first course was an abundant array of appetizers all beautifully presented: a new style caprese served in a glass, a tuna/green bean compote served in a cappucino cup, eggs stuffed with olives and bread, tomato/cheese souffle with basil sauce, a carmelized red onion quiche and while I really like all of the appetizers,
my personal preference was an unusual shrimp cocktail with green apples, pistachios and coconut. A Blanc de Blanc and Zinfandel from Hecker Pass
The pasta course featured a lasagna layered with zucchini pesto and a timbale of rice pizzaiola.
The second course was a plate of Chicken Cacciotora served with a mille feuille of potatos. The sauce on the chicken was very fresh and the potatos were divine. The wines paired with both the pasta and second course were Petite Sirah and a Carignane
Desserts or Dolci were a cantaloupe cocktail with port wine reduction, a dark chocolate torte with almonds served with vanilla gelato and hazelnut and pistachio gelato from Gelato Massimo. A Moscato and a ruby port was offered with dessert.
As they say in the commercials, "But wait, there is more." There was even a raffle with bottles of Hecker Pass Wines and tickets for future Finaldy events as prizes.
It was a wonderful evening where we shared delicious food, wine and laughter with our friends and family under the stars. I did not see a shooting star but for what more could I wish.
Go to the Finaldy web site to learn of other events including cooking classes under the tutelage of Chef Steffenone.