Today was the public opening of this new all Italian gourmet food shopping center called ‘Eataly‘.

The place is pretty impressive, big, appears to have a big selection, beautiful architecture and counters where you get your fresh fish, meat or cheese blend with sit-at counters where you can order food made from just the same ingredients.

I like the concept of the place in general and I heard that there are plans to open more Eatalies around the world .. and a place like that would just fly in New York, Tokyo or Singapore …

But here are my gripes .. do I really need yet another place I can get Italian food in Torino? Frankly: no. I did a spot check on items I have been looking for in other places in Torino and had trouble finding (i.e. sour cream, salmon roe) and they did not have them either. Yes, they have very fancy yoghurts, I bet their fresh meat & cheese selection is fantastic and they have more kinds of pasta then I have hairs on my head … but besides the novelty factor, I do not see a reason why I should hop on the tram to go there.

The other thing .. as nice as the lunch we had there (with Ritsu’s boss, who we had just sent a text message .. and 2 minutes later he ran into us) was … at 26EU for 2 people, while sitting at a counter .. not really cheap.

For opening day I would have expected more trays with freebies and little nibbles to try … but I only saw one place where passersby were eating olives like crazy, as if it was the only free food around (and it probably was) .. and then I saw a guy with a very nice tray of stuffed peppers … but that was only a stunt for the local TV crew.

I am very curious how this place will develop. I suspect it will become a tourist hot spot. And people living close by will enjoy it … but if I have to use public transportation, I rather go to the big market at Porto Pallazzo …

Julius was unfortunately a bit more on the unbearable side, since he already approached nap time and maybe the new surrounding was a bit much .. he sure loved to watch the glas tanks that they keep the crabs and lobsters in … but other than that he wanted to be carried around (which I try to explain to him again and again that if he is tired, he can lounge in the stroller, but that he is getting to heavy to be carried around) .. but he did enjoy the fresh bread and bits of our cheese and meat platters.

[update 2/2/07] I happened to show Eataly today to Sarah … and I wanted to take some more pictures for this post … but this time they had a BIG sign making it very clear that you will be hung, quartered and drowned if you dare to take pictures or videos … people are getting so weird about this these days.

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