Last month, the folks behind Vino Vino announced a new project called Al Fico, moving on over to the east side at 2nd Street and Chalmers. They've been blogging regularly about culinary trips to Italy (do not click if you're hungry, believe us, just don't do it) and today explain the source of their restaurant's name. It's an "homage to the way things were," originating in the days when folks would gather under the shade of fig (fico!) trees to share and sell food.
And thus, the Italian trattoria (TRAHT-toh-REE-ah) was born — in the shade of a fig tree (or perhaps a pear tree or an olive tree).Al Fico is set to open in "Spring 2012," with wood-fired pizzas, Italian coffee, and a beverage the owners are touting as the "Real Bellini."
Today in Italy, you still find scores of restaurants called trattoria al fico, osteria all’ulivo (tavern at the olive tree), ristorante al pero (restaurant at the pear tree), a homage to the way things were in a slower time and a slower age.
Al Fico partner Jeff Courington in Italy. [Photo: Linda Ryan/Al Fico]