Girasole

Italy Tours

Trip to Sicily – May 5 – 16, 2014

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We are planning an exclusive trip to the Sicily region of Italy from May 5th through May 16th. Our tour is small and personal. Local food and wine combined with the history and folklore of the local area. We will stay at Agriturismi when possible. We will visit a Marsala producer, a wine maker, almond and pistachio growers, Sicilian pottery shop, a puppet show, and local markets.

The group is limited to 10 persons. The package price is $3,200 per person and includes transportation to and from the Palermo airport, transportation throughout the tour, accommodations, breakfasts and dinners, and five lunches. Airfare and taxes are excluded.

For more information, visit www.girasole-italy.com. To make a reservation, please call Lydia Patierno at 540-253-5501. $1,000 deposit required to secure your reservation.

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Fall Trip to Sicily

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Travel to Sicily and you’ll be taken back in time to the beginning of the Greek empire. In a small group setting, you’ll learn about how the land was settled by the Greeks and then inhabited by the Corinthians, Romans, Arabs, Normans, French, and Spaniards before it became part of Italy.

As a small group, we’ll discover the island for ourselves through its food, architecture, culture, history, and people. The ten-day journey will begin in the capital city of Palermo along the western coast of the island. We are introduced to the Island of Sicily as we travel the small, winding streets of the bustling city exploring the open-air food, clothing, and spice markets. We travel along the coast, stopping in the port town of Trapani, an ancient city that has been vital to the island’s salt trade and tuna fishing industries. Then, we travel to Erice, Siracusa, and Agrigento where we see ancient Greek temples comparable to those in Athens. Our journey continues onto the towns of Noto, known for its gelato, and Taormina, next to the snowy slopes of Mt. Etna.

Our accommodations each night are at an Italian country home, referred to by Italians as an agriturismo, where we enjoy home cooked meals, comfortable furnishings, and the companionship of our Italian hosts and guides. Reserve your spot soon for our upcoming trip. We will depart on October 21st and return on November 1st. The cost of the trip, excluding airfare and taxes, is $3,200. Visit www.girasole-italy.com for complete information and the itinerary. Call Lydia Patierno at 540.253.5501 to make your reservation.

Buon Viaggio!

Photo of the Main Dining Room - Girasole - The Plains, VA

Girasole Offers A Delicious Bit of Italy

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By Middleburg Eccentric

Everyone knows what makes a house a home.  It’s cozy, inviting, filled with loved ones, good food, and everyone’s welcome, especially around the holidays.  That’s also what makes a great restaurant your home away from home, and that’s what you’ll find  At Girasole, in The Plains.

Not only will you enjoy fantastic regional Italian food by Chef Lou Patierno, but you will applaud the special dinner events they offer.

There are wine tastings and wine dinners every month; sponsor trips to Italy; an aperitivo bar; and, during the holiday season special food baskets; catering; party hosting, wine sales; and gift certificates.
Chef Patierno uses locally grown produce and meats in his recipes including mushrooms from North Cove Mushrooms, figs from Ticonderoga Farms, and organic beef and chicken from Ayrshire Farms.
“I was inspired by a trip to my aunt’s house in Ferrara in Northern Italy, when I was a teenager,” he explained.

“I fell in love with Italian cuisine.”

Trained at the Culinary Institute of America at Hyde Park, and later at the famed Tiberio in Washington, DC, Chef Patierno brings passion and expertise to his cooking.

“My approach is straightforward.  I want the natural flavors to come through which requires the very best ingredients.  Securing fresh products, especially locally sourced, is a requirement therefore to make a successful dish,” he emphasized.

Next month to celebrate truffle season, Chef Patierno and his wife, Lydia, who also trained at the Culinary Institute of America, will feature their annual Piedmont Truffle Dinner on Sunday, November 11 at 7 pm.

Hosted by their friend, Francesca Vaira of G.D. Vajra Wines, the seven courses will include tenderloin carpaccio with micro greens and shaved white truffles, Piedmontese carnaroli  truffle risotto, proscuitto wrapped Ayshire Farm rose veal and sweetbread studded agnolotti with shaved white truffles.

Other upcoming events include a Thanksgiving wine tasting on November 18 at 3 pm where fifteen wines will be offered to taste and to purchase to ensure that your Thanksgiving meal has perfect wine pairings.  But if you don’t want to cook on Thanksgiving, join the Patierno family for a traditional Thanksgiving dinner from noon to five.  For only $65 per person, you’ll enjoy a traditional meal with optional Italian-inspired side dishes.

Locals will enjoy Girasole’s new Apertivo Bar.  Small plate pastas, pizzas and other delectable bites and specialty cocktails are available each Sunday through Thursday from 4:30 to 6:30 in the lovely lounge area. For those who wish to learn from Chef Patierno, a cooking class, takes place periodically at the sister restaurant, Panino, in nearby Manassas, Virginia.

Lydia Patierno runs the dining area and she and her servers, that sometimes include her grown children and nephew, know how to ensure that everyone is treated exceptionally well and leaves happy.
Girasole is open everyday Monday through Saturday from 4:30 to 10 pm and Sunday from 11 am to 9 pm.  They can be found on the web at www.girasoleva.com and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/girasoleva   For more information or to make a reservation, call 540-253-5501.

Read the Full Article on The Middleburg Eccentric’s Website