Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Il Falo' di St. Antuono at La Sibilla-Food, Fun, and Fire

In Naples they say "Chi festeggia Sant'Antuono, tutto l'anno 'o pass' bbuon". 

Translated that means that whoever celebrates the festival of St Antuono will have a great year.  

Well, this year I decided to check out the Falo' di St Antuono at La Sibilla, a winery located in Bacoli (Na).  I thought it would e a good idea to witness some interesting traditions, learn a little history, try some amazing local food and wine...but most importantly, be treated to some real hospitality by my friends and ownes of the winery, the Di Meos.

A little research and I learned that January 17th is the day to celebrate the festival of St Anthony the Great, known as St Antuono in Naples.He is known as the patron saint of animals as well as healer of skin diseases.  Also the patron saint of butchers and pigs.  Why a bonfire?  In with the out...old with the new, so to speak.  

"sant'Andùon', sant'Andùon', pigli't 'o viecch' e damm 'o nuovo"
(St. Anthony, St. Anthony, take the old and give me the new)

Luigi Di Meo along with his family and friends lit that fire while we watched with a glass of piedirosso in our hands. 

A moment or two of reflection...then time to eat.  A time to try traditional Neapolitan dishes such as la zuppa di cicerchie,  a bean soup served with toasted bread cubes. La pizzella di farinella, a fried pasta and flour dish with a little pig fat for flavor.   La pizza di pisellini novelli, uova e formaggio, pizza with peas, eggs and cheese, and il tortano di cigoli di maiale, a bread made with pork and cheese.  All served warm, all delicious.  

Another fire, this time for the barbecue.  This time for sausages, that were an excellent pairing for piedirosso.

I looked around and I saw smiles.  From the family, their friends, and their guests.

I listened, and I heard laughter.  Genuine laughter of people who were obviously enjoying themselves on this humid evening around the fire.

"Chi festeggia Sant'Antuono, tutto l'anno 'o pass' bbuon".

Let's hope so!

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