This week, at Gastronomique, we went and educated ourselves about Italy. We actually traveled there last week, and had a wonderful time, until we went to the Mechanics Institute. There, Carol Field told us that Italy was not what it used to be, and we had missed it by 50 years.

Carol is a San Francisco writer, who splits her time between the city and the Italian countryside. She just wrote a book, which she was signing at the Mechanics Institute, Italy in Small Bites (HarperCollins). Her talk was accompanied by a tasting, which was reason enough for us to go. Never would we say no to free food. MUNI thwarted our plan, and while we were fashionably late, we missed on the little tapas thingies that were offered: a full room of punctual people had already feasted on them.