I haven’t been posting for the past several weeks because we’ve been on the road, lingering for a while on the North and South Forks of Long Island, Northern New Jersey, and Chicago. No other American city celebrates the arrival of warm weather like Chicago residents, who pack the streets, parks, and the beaches, chatting, eating, and walking.
Every time we visit Chicago, we always visit Eataly, one of our favorite destinations in the River North section. What is Eataly? It is the brilliant brainchild of the famous Italian chefs Lydia Bastanich and Mario Batali. It is also the clever combination of two words…”Eat” and “Italy.” Satellite stores have opened in New York, Chicago, as well as 27 sites around the world, including Dubai, Turkey, and Japan. But what is Eataly? It is quite simply nirvana for those of us who adore Italian cuisine and everything Italian. For that reason, it is a perfect “container” for all things Italian.
Architecture is basically a container of something. I hope they will enjoy not so much the teacup, but the tea.–Yoshio Taniguchi
Imagine a building that extends an entire city block. Now imagine that every corner of the interior space is divided into sections–grocery, meat (carne), seafood (pesce), dried meat (salumi), sweets (dolci), as well as pizza, pasta, and bread stations where people are actually kneading dough and sliding trays of perfectly-formed loaves into ovens. Now add sections where you can buy cosmetics, housewares, and books–all produced in Italy. (Are you dizzy yet?) The space is also filled with several restaurants, tasting stations, a cooking school, a gelateria and a capuccino/espresso bar.
When you walk into Eataly, you almost believe you have been transported to an Italian village. When come to your senses, an hour has passed and you’re still standing in the dolce section staring lovingly and gluttonously at the desserts, which taste just as delicious as they look.
I had always thought that once you grew up you could do anything you wanted – stay up all night or eat ice-cream straight out of the container.–Bill Bryson
What a perfect place for this week’s “container” challenge! If you have the opportunity to visit one of the Eataly locations around the world, don’t hesitate! Run! (And send me a piece of hazelnut cioccolato.)
For other interpretations of this week’s theme, click on the links below: