February 08, 2017

Bottega Caruso | A Weekend Walk #19

When a dear friend of ours was set to be married, the best man wanted to hold a stag do that was truly befitting of the groom. Fun, intimate, inclusive, good food and long walks; so none of the usual antics, then.

Call it a 'Stag Don't' if you will (we did).

He found a beautiful country house in the Kentish countryside where we could watch the autumn sky; together we planned a day filled with adventures with a stop off at Macknade for lunch and supplies (read, multiple bottles of wine); and found the perfect solution to not having to cook for ourselves - Bottega Caruso - a local supperclub that could come to you.

A vibrant Italian woman, Simona, and her gentle partner, Harry (who was formerly a London restaurant manager) Bottega Caruso has been one of the most impressive supper clubs I have had the pleasure of enjoying.
A simple, no-fuss approach -at an exceptionally reasonable price -  Simona
from Campania (a small village outside Naples) takes ingredients, recipes and stories from her home and uses them alongside local Kentish fare to create a compelling menu and narrative.

Many of the seasonal ingredients are grown by her family, such as their pickled broccoli from Nonno Gaetano (pictured below) and an incredible tomato sauce. 

(Salmon cured with lemon, pink peppercorns, and parsley)

Each dish was honest: good, fresh ingredients paired, complementing the virtues of the other, and introduced with a short story and a smile from our eager but humble host. Besides knowing that the food was great, we were also treated to the warmth of their hospitality and unobtrusive passion for food, making the experience all the more endearing, genuine and quite unforgettable. 

I'd have liked to have taken photos of the food, but I'm afraid we all ate it rather too fast. No time to linger when it's this good.

What's exciting to hear, is that after a year of touring supperclubs and stocking Canterbury Farmer's Market, they are now looking to start their own restaurant in the amazing seaside resort of Margate, Kent.

With many small ventures, however, the act of starting up can be a challenge and so Simona and Harry have turned to Kickstarter to help them along the way.

If you love good food, great personalities and culture, you might consider backing it?


I'll be back once they've opened - I'm sure they'll make it to full funding - with a little help from us all. 

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