Part Whole Foods, part Dean & Deluca, part the Slow Food food restaurant in its Italian hometown of Bra, the Natural Kitchen promises "organic, wild and artisan food". And while I didn’t have time to sample its wares – the Kitchen stocks respected niche fayre from River Cottage, the Well Hung Meat Company and fine cheeses from Paxton and Whitfield to name just a few – Natural Kitchen looks a great (if admittedly pricey) find for any Brit looking for a Slow Food deli.
And that also makes it a natural choice to help launch Petrini’s new book, Slow Food Nation in the UK (here’s a link to the Slow Food Nation movement in the US). I had a quick chat with Petrini and he stressed the need for young Gastrokids to be citizens and participants of the world (and the world of food) rather than mere consumers.
I asked Petrini what is the most important attribute our children can learn in order to develop a sophisticated, healthy and informed palette? "Our children’s relationship with and understanding of the land is most important" says Petrini. If they understand where our food comes from and how integral a role it plays in the well-being of our society, then communities will be stronger, traditional culinary customs and artisanal produces will flourish and the Gastrokids of this world will outweigh the fast food drones…..okay he didn’t say that bit; I’m doing my own interpreting!
Petrini is a smart guy and Slow Food remains a movement worthy of support so check out the book…..and if you’re in London, the Natural Kitchen is well worth a visit.