the mouth must adjust

“The wines we now make in Apulia, like those we drank and used for cooking on Naxos and in Tuscany, are grown on a small-holding scale and almost exclusively for the grower’s use. . . .

Appreciation of [these] local wines comes gradually, while drinking, and by accepting their peculiarities. ‘Bisogna farsi la bocca’ is the rule. The mouth must adjust, and on the whole it does this best while eating. (Naxian quarrymen professed to eat only to honour the wine.) One is in fact asked to get over the shock of their uncontrolled diversity, which fluctuates not only with the weather during the year and on the day of the harvest, but according to the wine-maker’s hunches. . . .

The result is that one encounters both wonders and horrors such as are never met with in bottled wine.”

—Norman Mommens, “The Sculptor,” writing in Patience Gray’s Honey From a Weed (London: Prospect books, 1986.)

Other People’s Kitchens

NYT article on a perennial problem.

atlas pasta machine mod


Everyone I know who has a pasta machine has this same pasta machine. Damp pasta dough sometimes sticks to the rollers and gets stuck under the casing pieces (not shown), and dries, and then catches more pasta dough and drags it in under the casing pieces. You have to open it up every few years and get that crap out.

Which is a pain. Not only is the thing difficult to take apart, but it is made from very sharp stamped metal which will cut you and have you cursing Italians, if you are the sort of person who likes to do that sort of thing.

Once you have those casings off (revealing the smaller, outer dowels, shown above) you will find them very difficult to put back on.

Why bother?

mannish carrot of the week