Monday, October 31, 2011

A Memorable Dinner at Ristorante Bottega, Yountville

One of the best of many wonderful meals we had during our recent visit to California was at Bottega Ristorante in Yountville, Napa Valley. It was very close to Bistro Jeanty, where we'd had dinner the previous evening. It was an easy drive down Route 29 from our hotel in St. Helena.

The restaurant was large and doing a bustling business. It had a very nice, but not intimate atmosphere. Our server was James was extremely knowledgeable, helpful, and professional. I had lots of questions and he had lots of great answers.

The menu was extremely creative and the food was fantastic.  The owner is famous chef Michael Chiarello. The executive chef is Robert Hohmann.

When I told James that I wanted to order a bottle of Zinfandel, perhaps from Grgich Hills winery, he suggested instead a 2008 Paradigm Zinfandel from nearby Oakville. He said that only about 200 cases per year are produced. It was $53, and in the same price range as the Grgich Hills. We followed his suggestion and are glad we did. The wine, produced by famous winemaker Heidi Barrett, was terrific.

When I returned home, I discovered that the lowest on-line price I could find was $34.95 plus shipping, so the $53 cost was really low for a restaurant. Restaurant wine prices are generally two to three times retail. Michael Chiarello states in the introduction to his wine menu that his wines are aggressibely priced to afford diners the opportunity to drink better wines.

My wife's appetizer was "Succotash" - forno-roasted summer squash and sweet corn. cherry tomato, ricotta and chili-stuffed squash blossom, arugula leaves, and "corn pudding" that was really not a pudding. It was delicious.

My appetizer was Burrata Caprese - creamy whipped mozzarella burrata, Golden Bear Ranch heirloon tomatoes, deep-fried bruschetta, and basil oil and balsamic caviar. It was an incredible dish. The bruschetta was probably the best I've ever had. The "caviar" was made from the balsamic vinegar.

We both had the same main course - Risotto Calabrese - risotto with Calabrian sausage, butter, parmesan cheese, oregano, cherry tomatoes, and goat cheese. It was terrific.

For dessert, my wife had Tiramisu Profiteroles - tiramisu and sponge cake gelato with "Cocoa Puff" chocolate sauce - for $10.

I had Caramel Fig Crostata for $10. Since I could not remember all the details of this mouth-watering dessert, I sent an email to Bottega, and received a detailed answer from the restaurant’s General Manager, Joël Hoachuck. The recipe for the dish is:

House made dough pie crust
Traditional caramel
Fresh fig halves
Fresh minced thyme & grated lemon zest
(about ½ tbsp of butter added for richness during baking)
Sprinkled with coarse “disco” sugar

To finish:
Scoop of house made crème fraîche sherbet
The gremolata is in fact a biscotti cookie crumble (consisting of almond anise, chocolate pistachio and cinnamon)

Caramel Fig Crostata

 After dessert, we each had an espresso for $3.25. These cups of espresso were the smallest I have ever had, and I’ve had many espressos all over the U.S., Italy, and France. We almost needed a microscope to find the coffee.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Yemeni-Moroccan-California Fusion in SF

While we were in San Francisco earlier this month, we had a terrific dinner at Saha ( - which offers a wonderful and unusual fusion of Yemeni Arabic, Moroccan, and California cuisines with French influences. In addition to Middle Eastern and North African dishes, Saha has many vegan dishes like shiitake mango ravioli, and many creative dishes like Salmon Baklava!
We had never had Yemeni cuisine, and I was anxious to try it. The experience was great. I wish we lived nearby. I would go there often

The atmosphere is warm and Middle Eastern.

Our waiter was a Moroccan named Hassan. He was very nice. He introduced us to Mohamed Aboghanem, the owner and chef. In our short conversation, Mohamed mentioned that Yemenis tend to use more cumin in their dishes; whereas Levantine Arabs tend to use more allspice.

Hassan began by bringing us some delicious, fresh-baked Moroccan bread with a dip of olive oil, sesame seeds and thyme.

My wife decided to have two appetizer dishes. She started with the traditional Arabic kibbeh. There are many versions of kibbeh - both cooked and raw. Saha serves a cooked version. It has an outer shell of cracked wheat (bulgur wheat) stuffed with ground beef, onions, pine nuts, and spices. It is served with a tomato sauce and leban (Middle Eastern Yoghurt). It was very tasty. (My mother used to make incredible kibbeh.)

I started with Lahem Sougar, a Yemeni dish. It involved grass-fed lamb sautéed with sumac, pine nuts, and olive oil, and served over Baba Ghanoush, with pita bread, olives, and harissa sauce. It was delicious, and cost $16.

My wife’s second appetizer dish was Bastilla, a Moroccan dish with chicken, almonds, onions, egg, parsley, and spices, wrapped in phyllo dough, baked with powdered sugar garnish and served over saffron sauce. It was wonderful and cost $12.


I had Helba, a Yemeni national dish made with okra, potatoes, fenugreek, rice and vegetable broth. Saha offers three versions - with only vegetables, with lamb and ground beef, and with wild salmon, ahi and scallops. I had the version with lamb & ground beef for $23. It was served with excellent pita bread. The Helba was fantastic. (Diners who have never had really fresh, genuine pita bread, rather than the mediocre supermarket versions are missing a real treat.)  

Our wine was a Nyers 2010 Vista Luna Borden Ranch Dry Creek Zinfandel for $41. It was very, very nice.

For dessert, my wife had crème brulée.

I had a Yemeni cake called Bisbusa, with syrup, strawberries, and pistacchio gelato for $6. It was very tasty.

One minor disappointment was that Saha did not serve Arabic coffee, so I had a cup of San Francisco Coffee Company coffee. Saha does serve Arabic tea.

Saha is located in the Hotel Carlton at 1075 Sutter St. Phone 415-345-9547. The night we were there, the restaurant was very busy, so I would strongly recommend reservations.

To get a really good appreciation of Saha, see the YouTube story at

Sunday, October 23, 2011

A "Relatively" Delicious Dinner

Last week, we enjoyed a delightful evening and delicious dinner hosted by my cousin and his wife, who live in Sonoma. My cousin in a superb cooking and is very knowledgeable about wines.
We started with an appetizer plate that included fig jam and crackers, olives, stuffed peppers.

The wine my cousin served with the appetizers was a 2009 Alexandra Gianna Pinot Grigio made by a friends of my cousin and his wife. The wine is produced by Jon and Carol Sebastiani, and is named after their youngest daughter. I rated it as excellent - at the top of my wine grading system.

The first dish was a fantastic mussel dish prepared by my cousin. The ingredients included mussels, pancetta, roma tomato, chicken broth, half a stick of butter, and a half bottle of white wine. I love mussels and pancetta, and this was one of the best mussel dishes I have ever had, and better than a terrific one I had at Bistro Jeanty last night.

The next wine that my cousin opened was a 2004 Kenwood Cabernet Sauvignon, from Kenwood in Sonoma County. It was also excellent.

The second dish was prepared by his wife. It was equally delicious - with a jalapeño vinaigrette that included apple cider vinegar, jalapeño, onions, garlic, and cilantro.

The table where we ate the appetizers and main courses was very interesting. It was made from a massive wooded beam from an old house they had renovated in San Francisco.

We moved to the living room for dessert - pumpkin pie and ice cream. We love pumpkin pie, and ice cream is always high on Linda's list.

The dessert wine my cousin served was a 1994 Carmenet late harvest sauvignon blanc. We enjoyed it, but he thought it was not very good.

Despite all of the wonderful conversation, food and wine, there was one major flaw that may outweigh all of the pleasure of the evening - the colors of the different cloth napkins they used did not match. We suggest that they may wish to attend napkin matching school. (Only joking, of course.)

Friday, October 14, 2011

Nopa - More Fine, Fun Frisco Food

Tonight, my wife and I had dinner at Nopa (, which had been recommended to s by our terrific niece who lives in the area. Nopa, which is located at 560 Divisadero, was packed when we arrived. I wasn't surprised because it wasn't easy to get a reservation.

The crowd was primarily young and very animated - obviously having a great time. We were seated on the second level, which was quieter. The second level overlooked the first.

Our server was Ryan. He was very knowledgeable, pleasant, and professional. He was from Minnesota. The menu was very creative, so it was very hard to choose. Almost everything that is made, like pasta and sausage, is made in house.

We were served an amuse bouche of a long green bean each with Molden sea salt, a gourmet sea salt from the UK.

Linda and I shared an appetizer of crostini, with a warm goat cheese spread, fresh plums, and watercress for $11. It was wonderful. There were lots of crostini and a nice ramekin of goat cheese. It was perfect for sharing.

Linda's entrée was a Moroccan vegetable tagine with roasted almonds and lemon yoguhrt for $18. It was delicious.

My entrée was housemade pappardelle with spicy fennel sausage, delicata squach, and a cream sauce with parmesan for $19. It was fantastic.

For dessert, we shared Jonathan apple crisp with calvados ice cream for $8. It was delicious.

One interesting-sounding dessert was Johnny cake with roasted corn ice cream and bacon brittle for $8.

With dessert, I had a 2-cup pot of coffee that was made from a blend of three African coffees - one Ugandan coffee and two Ethiopian coffees - Yirgacheff and Sidamo. It was terrific.

Our wine was a southern Rhône red - 2009 Alain Graillot Crozes-Hermitage for $50. It was very nice.

The total cost of this delightful dinner was $121.47.

When we left the restaurant about 11:15 pm, it was still three-quarters full and customers were still coming in.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Delicious Japanese Ramen - Katana-Ya

One Japanese dish I love is ramen. These are not the tiny, short noodles found on U.S. supermarket shelves. Rather these are long noodles served in large bowls with a variety of ingredients. I had ramen in many small ramen shops throughout Japan during the 4 years I lived there. I always loved it. It was best in winter, when the hot soup warmed body and soul.

Ramen in Japan ( is served in different broths. The major types are miso, soy (shouyu), salt (shio), and tonkotsu (not tonkatsu).

Toppings in the ramen can include things like pork slices, seaweed, onions, corn, bamboo shoots, bean sprouts, boiled eggs, etc.

There are many Japanese restaurants in San Francisco that serve Ramen. My wonderful niece, who lives in the area, recommended Katana-ya, which means something like, "Sword Shop."

The night before last, I followed her recommendation, and went to the restaurant at 430 Geary St., about a block and a half from Union Square. My wife, who was tired from our long trip to San Francisco, decided not to join me.

When I walked up to Katana-ya, there were a number of young people, mostly Asian-Americans, waiting outside for tables.

I walked up to a stand just outside the front door, where there was a waiting list. One of the people next to the stand said I should write my name on the list. I did that. Next to the names on the list was a column for the number of people in the party. All of the other names on the list had parties of two or more. That was fortunate for me, my name was the next one called.

I was put at the sushi bar. I ordered a bowl of Corn-butter Ramen for $9.50 and a 16 oz. Sapporo draft beer. The ramen was in a huge bowl as it is served in Japan. The ingredients included long ramen noodles, green onions, two slices of tender pork, corn, butter, greens, and several other ingredients. It was fantastic! The total cost came to $15.73.

At least three of the servers spoke Japanese, so when two of them asked me at different times how the ramen was, I told them in Japanese that it was wonderful.


Breakfast at Sears Fine Food, San Francisco

This morning, my wife and I had breakfast at Sears Fine Food (, which is located at 439 Powell St., about a block and a half from our hotel. I chose this restaurant because of many excellent reviews on
The restaurant, which was founded in 1938, has an extensive breakfast menu. Breakfast is served until 3 pm, and overlaps with lunch service, which begins at 11 am.

The restaurant, which is very large, was almost full. Fortunately, we were seated right away.

Linda started with a regular coffee for $2.45. She found it very flavorful. I had a double mocha for $4.70. It was rich and delicious.

Linda had scrambled eggs with hash browns and sourdough toast for $8.95. The dish was tasty. She also had a large glass of orange juice for $4.25. She would rather have had a small glass, but only large glasses were on the menu.

My meal was fantastic. I had the restaurant's famous Swedish pancackes - a plate of 18 small, thin pancakes for $9.95. I added lingonberries to put on top for $2.25. I had a side of country sausage for $3.50. I loved the pancakes and sausage.

Even though the restaurant was crowded, the service was efficient and friendly.

The total for our breakfast came to $39.11 - more then we would have paid at home, but then this is downtown San Francisco.

San Francisco's Restaurant Gary Danko - An Unforgettable Experience

There are restaurants, Restaurants, RESTAURANTS, and RESTAURANTS. Restaurant Gary Danko is a RESTAURANT. Last night, my wife and I enjoyed a superb dinner there.

Restaurant Gary Danko (RGD) is located at 800 North Point St. at the intersection with Hyde St. It is a short distance from Fisherman's Wharf. RGD only takes reservations by phone. The phone nr. is 415-749-2060. Reservations should be made long in advance. The restaurant was full the whole time we were there, and we saw diners arriving at least as late as 10:30.

We arrived at the restaurant at 9:10 - 20 minutes before our reeservation time. However, we were seated within 3-4 minutes.

Our server, Darrin, was terrific. He was efficient, friendly, and extremely knowedgeable about the cuisine. I was very impressed when I heard him spend several minutes describing in great detail to diners at the next table the many offerings on the cheese cart.

RGD only offers prix-fixe menus. The three-course menu is $69, the four-course menu is $87, and the five-course menu is $102. There is also a five-course tasting menu for $102 and wine pairing for $60.

The menu at RGD is superbly creative. I had a very difficult time choosing. The menu can be seen at

We both decided to do the three-course prix-fixe meal.

We started with an amuse bouche, a gift from the chef. It was an incredibly delicious tomato-fennel soup with roasted red pepper, diced onion, leeks, garlic, and basil.

The bread were were served throughout the meal was wonderful. I agreed with my wife's view that we could have made a meal of a bowl of the amuse bouche soup, the bread, and wine.

Our first course was an appetizer:

My wife had Risotto with Lobster, Rock Shrimp, Shimeji Mushrooms, Peas, Corn and Roasted Tomatoes. It was fantastic.

I had Lobster Salad with Asian Pear, Mango, Avocado, Cashews and Lime Cilantro Rémoulade. It was also superb.

Our second course was an entrée:

My wife had Herb Crusted Lamb Loin with Tian of Summer Vegetables and Polenta. It was delicious.

I had a wonderful Juniper Crusted Bison with King Trumpet Mushrooms, Glazed Cipollini Onions and Herb Spaetzle.

Our third course was dessert:

My wife had Roasted Fig Tart with Almond Frangipane and Raspberry Ice Cream. It was nice, but not what she expected. She thought the figs would be incorporated into the tart. Instead, three figs and several raspberries were on top of the almond frangipane.

I had the Crème Fraiche Cheesecake with Caramelized Pecans, Summer Berries and Strawberry Sorbet. It was mouth watering.

Our wine was a southern Rhône red - 2007 Perrin & Fils "Les Christins," made from 80% grenache and 20% syrah for $60. It was very nice.

Our wine sommelier was, Deanna, who was very knowledgeable and charming. She has been a sommelier for 9 years.

The restaurant says that its wine list contains over 1,200 selections from 15 countries, with vintages spanning three centuries. The wine list is available at It has earned aWine Spectator Grand Award.

As an anniversary present, Darrin served us:
- A lemon icebox cake - sorbet with cream
- nine fantastic little artisinal sweets

Finally, Darrin brought us a parting gift of two wrapped Gary Danko breakfast cakes. We had the breakfast cakes as a snack this afternoon. They were very tasty - like a banana bread.

The service was impeccable except for one small hiccup. It took a while for our dessert to arrive. However, a member of the staff advised us immediately after our entree plates were cleared that the dessert would be slow to arrive.

It was interesting to observe how the staff worked with one another as an efficient and professional team.

The restaurant had a cab waiting for us as we walked out the front door. (Darrin had asked us earlier if we had driven or come by cab.)

Friday, October 7, 2011

Wine Club Dinner at Apron's Cooking School, Publix

Once a year, our wine club has a dinner at Apron's Cooking School, run by Publix supermarkets. Every year, the dinner is wonderful. This year was no exception. Last night, our club had our annual Apron's dinner, and the chefs of Apron's hit another home run. We loved every bite and the wines were perfect for the dishes.

The dinner was jointly planned by Jim Hendry, the head chef of our local Apron's, and by one of our members who is extremely knowledgeable about wine and foods and who has planned each dinner for 4 years.

Apron's has two types of classes - hands-on classes and demonstration classes. Apron's offers both public and private classes. Our dinners are always private demonstration classes.

Not only were the wines and foods superb, but the price was great - $45 per person for a 4-course meal, four wines, tax, and gratuity.

The four courses and accompanying wines were:
1. Tomato, goat cheese, and caramelized onion tart served with 14 Hands "Hot to Trot" white wine from Washington State.
2. Boursin cheese and mushroom-stuffed chicken breasts accompanied by Kunde Family Estate Sonoma Chardonnay.
3. Tournedos of beef tenderloin with portobello carpaccio, and orzo with parmesan and basil, served with J. Lohr Seven Oaks Paso Robles Cabernet Sauvignon.
4. Bittersweet chocolates mousse cake with fresh berries accompanied by Castello Banfi Rosa Regale wine from the Piedmont area of Italy. (This wine is made from brachetto grapes, which I have not had in any other wine. Castello Banfi was founded and owned by the Marianis, an Italian-American family. Its Italian HQ is near Montalcino in Tuscany.)

(I have a special place in my heart for Apron's because I learned how to cook at a basic class which I took there early last year from the same chefs who prepared last night's dinner.)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Celebrating at the Beachhouse

Last Saturday, my sister, my wife, and I went to lunch at the Beachhouse Restaurant ( on Anna Maria Island to celebrate my sister's entry into Medicare. The weather was perfect and the food was delicious. The Beachhouse has both indoor and outdoor seating. We chose an outdoor table with a beautiful view of the Gulf of Mexico. Life doesn't get any better.

The ladies both started with something exotic like diet Cokes. I had the obligatory Mai Tai which I feel compelled to order so that I can feel "tropical." This Mai Tai was perfect.

My sister had the Beachhouse Trio - a scoop each of Crab Pasta, Lobster Salad, and Chicken Salad served with fruit for $12.99. She enjoyed the dish.

My wife and I both had lobster roll sandwiches - lobster, shrimp, and blue crab blended with diced celery, scallions, and mayonnaise on a hoagie for $12.99. The sandwiches were very tasty, but not quite as good as the lobster roll sandwiches at Sharkey's on the Pier in Venice because the latter have more lobster.

Before my sandwich, I had a delicious cup of clam chowder for $3.99.

The ladies shared a piece of key lime pie for dessert for $4.50. They loved it.

It wouldn't be my sister if she didn't have a discount of some type. She had her Entertainment card which entitled us to one free entree.

The Beachhouse and two other restaurants - the Sandbar on Anna Maria and Mar Vista on Longboat Key - are owned by Ed Chiles, son of former Florida Senator and Governor, Lawton Chiles.

The Beachhouse is located at 200 Gulf Drive North in Bradenton Beach, just south of the intersection with Cortez Rd.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Great Lamb Dish from Italy's Le Marche Region

I made a mostly Italian dinner tonight, including my first dish from Italy's Le Marche region. The meal turned out really good, but was a lot more work than I had expected, for a couple of reasons explained below. There were three dishes:
- The main dish was Agnello 'ncip 'nciape - Lamb chunks with olives
- The salad was hearts of palm with lots of other goodies
- The dessert was a typical ambrosia fruit salad, but with fresh plums and without the coconut.

The salad and dessert were very fast and easy to prepare. The lamb dish took time, but was very easy to do and well worth the effort.

Agnello 'ncip 'nciape (pronounced nchip nchoppay - from the sound of the lamb as it's cooking)

This dish is a Lidia Bastianich recipe from Le Marche, an Italian region which is in central Italy. Its western border is with Umbria and its eastern border is the Adriatic. The dish was terrific and it does not have many ingredients. However, there were two things that slowed me down:
1. The recipe calls for boneless lamb shoulder or leg cut into chunks. Unfortunately, my local Publix only had lamb chops with the bone in. So it took me a while to cut up the lamb.
2. The recipe also calls for a cup and a half of crushed and pitted Italian olives. I bought whole Italian cerignola olives, which I love and which worked perfectly with this dish. It took me a while to cut up all of the olives.

Cooking the dish is very easy. I love it and will make it again.

The recipe, which is available at is:

This is one of those delicious dishes that are complex in taste but easy in preparation. In Le Marche it is made with lamb and Ascolane olives, because that is what the land provides, but it could be made with other green olives; black olives such as taggiasche or Gaeta, would be fine, too. As in the recipe for Chicken with Olives and Pine Nuts, the simple pan-cooking method used here is typical of Le Marche. Try preparing other meats, such as beef or pork, the same way-keeping in mind that the cooking time will vary-and the results will be excellent. And though lamb shoulder is delicious and economical, more expensive lamb would be extraordinary prepared in the same style. This dish is good any time of year, too. In the winter, serve it with polenta and braised bitter greens such as broccoli rabe; in summer, a tossed green salad would go nicely.

3½ pounds boneless lamb shoulder or leg
2 teaspoons kosher salt
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
7 garlic cloves, crushed and peeled
½ teaspoon peperoncino flakes, or to taste (I used chili pepper)
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, leaves, stripped from the branch
1 cup white wine
2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
1½ cups brine-cured green Italian olives, crushed and pitted

Trim the exterior fat from the lamb shoulder or leg, and cut the meat into 2-inch pieces, removing fat and bits of cartilage as you find them. Pat the pieces dry with paper towels, and season all over with 1 teaspoon of the salt.

Pour the olive oil into the pan, and set it over medium heat. Scatter in the crushed garlic cloves and peperoncino. When the garlic is sizzling, lay in all the lamb pieces in one layer, scatter the rosemary on top, and season with the remaining teaspoon salt. When the meat starts to sizzle, cover the pan, lower the heat, and let cook gently, browning slowly and releasing its fat and juices.

After about 10 minutes, uncover the pan, turn the pieces, and move them around the pan to cook evenly, then replace the cover. Turn again in 10 minutes or so, and continue covered cooking for another 10 to 15 minutes, until the lamb is nicely browned all over and the pan juices have thickened and caramelized. If there is a lot of fat in the bottom of the pan, tilt the skillet and spoon off the fat from one side.

Stir the wine and vinegar together, and pour them into skillet, swirling them with the pan juices. Turn up the heat, bring the liquids to a boil, and cook them down quickly to form a syrupy sauce. Drop the olives into the pan, all around the lamb chunks, then cover and adjust the heat to a bubbling simmer. Cook for another 10 minutes or so, again concentrating the juices and marrying the flavors. Finally, cook uncovered for a few minutes, tumbling the meat and olives in the pan, coating them with the sauce.

Serve immediately, right from the skillet, or heap the meat chunks on a platter or in a shallow serving bowl. Spoon out any sauce and olives left in the pan, and drizzle over the lamb.

The salad is allegedly Italian. It is from a New York cooking school called Whether or not it is authentic is not important. It tastes great. The main ingredients are hearts of palm, mozzarella, romaine lettuce, olives, cherry tomatoes, prosciutto, and a simple home made dressing.


This colorful salad can be embellished with toasted pine nuts or slivered radicchio if you like.

  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 cup shredded Romaine lettuce
  • 1 can (15 ounces) hearts of palm, drained, rinsed, and thinly sliced
  • 12 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 12 pitted black olives
  • 1/2 pound bocconcini (fresh Mozzarella balls), thinly sliced
  • 8 thin slices Prosciutto Cotto, rolled into spirals
In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, olive oil, salt, pepper, and oregano; set this dressing aside.
Arrange the Romaine, hearts of palm, tomatoes, olives, bocconcini, and Prosciutto Cotto on 4 plates.
Drizzle with the dressing and enjoy. Serves 4

Ambrosia Fruit Salad

The ambrosia fruit salad was typical and incredibly easy to make. As I mentioned above, I left out the coconut and added fresh plums. It was terrific with the plums.

It is available at: and is:

Source: AllRecipes Rating: none

Ingredients Serves: 4
11 ozmandarin oranges (drained)
8 ozpineapple chunks (drained)
1 cup miniature marshmallows
1 cup  flaked coconut
1 cupsour cream
In a large bowl, combine the oranges, pineapple, marshmallows and coconut. Add sour cream and toss to mix. Cover and refrigerate for several hours.

Hearts of Palm Salad with Prosciutto Cotto, Bocconcini, and Olives