Fellini appeal

Forgive me for confusing Fellini for being something cat-like… particularly sensual and emotive, sleek in movement and extravagant in taste. As my resident ‘cultural imposter‘ watches a DVD of La Dolce Vita I am left wondering whether the title is meant to be an advert for a healthy ice-cream. But then, so many things in Italian just sound like they should be eaten, whether you know what they are or not.

Anita Ekberg

Anita Ekberg in La Dolce Vita

I am reminded of a recent sojourn into what passes as Little Italy, Cardiff-style. No, not the clusters of ersatz pizza chains designed to remind the casual holidaymaker of something they used mainly to soak up the excess alcohol. I am reflecting on something with a little more authenticity and panache. For those in the know, I am talking a gentle sashay down The Hayes to Giovanni’s joint.

Giovanni's [3]

Original since 1983, here you will be greeted by truly melodic Italian accents, and a clash of cultural images as something a little more sinister bids you ‘buon appetito’.

Giovanni's [1]I strongly advise you to check out the menu before you go, because there is so much to tempt the taste buds, and all sounding like they should be devoured with relish (no, not the American stuff for covering up bad tasting food!). Just for starters you can indulge a Carpaccio di Manzo (marinated raw fillet of beef), Gamberoni alla Marchesa (roasted large king prawns); or if you are strictly vegetarian they even throw in some humourous offers: Funghi alla Mimi e Coco’ (sort that one out for yourself). And then there is the inevitable Zuppa Giorno ( because life is a minestrone!).

As for the main course, this cat couldn’t resist the Penne Spezzatino (fillet steak pieces tossed in garlic, wine and traditional Italian tomato sauce). I am still tasting it as I write.

Giovanni's [2]

As for liquid refreshment, there is nothing like a bowl of Peroni Nastro Azzurro to whet a cat’s whiskers before the main course. And it was a certain Hannibal Lecter who once advised the choice of a nice Chianti, but just be careful what the meat is if you are taking this source of advice!!!

Until we speak again I have been Don Juno wishing you buon appetito.

[With thanks to Arte.TV blog for posting the still image I borrowed of Anita Ekberg].

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