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The Trattoria Revolution

Aprile 2013
Cenare fuori a Londra? Prima del 1959 era un lusso, poi due italiani aprirono la Trattoria Terrazza e tutto cambiò. Alasdair Scott Sutherland (intervistato nel numero in edicola) ci racconta di quel luogo, in cui era possibile incontrare star del cinema e spedire cartoline...

di Mark Worden


Gastronomica in Pimlico was founded in 2000 by Marco Vineis
Gastronomica in Pimlico was founded in 2000 by Marco Vineis
Alasdair Scott
Alasdair Scott

Speaker: Mark Worden (Standard British accent)

Alasdair Scott Sutherland is the author of the book The Spaghetti Tree: Mario and Franco and the Trattoria Revolution. It tells the story of two Italians who transformed dining out in London when they opened the Trattoria Terrazza in Soho in 1959. In the 1960s “the Trat” became the in place. Alasdair Scott Sutherland recalls going there as a young man:

Alasdair Scott Sutherland (Standard British accent)

The upstairs, above the Terrazza, on the first floor, there was a bar called the Gatto Nero, and if there... your table wasn’t ready, you would be sent upstairs to... to sit and have a... an aperitif while you waited for your table. And on the coffee table in front of where you sat in the bar there were little postcards with pictures on... of the four rooms in... and on the back you could write your message and they would post it for you. And so I used to go in there and I would send my mother a... a... a postcard. And, for example, I wrote to her: ”I’m here with Robin for dinner, with Annie and... and Jean, and I’m sitting right next to Brigitte Bardot!” And you would leave it, and you would go... and they would call you and you’d go down and you’d see Brigitte Bardot coming downstairs. Of course the whole restaurant would get a little bit quiet, but we were pretending to be sophisticated, so very soon we’d all start talking again and pretend that we hadn’t gasped when Brigitte Bardot walked in. And, when I was researching The Spaghetti Tree, one of the things that happened while I was working on the book was that my mother died and in her desk I found 15 of these old postcards that I’d sent her, saying normally things like, you know, “I’ll be down at 3 o’clock on Saturday, looking forward to seeing you” but there were things like “Anthony Quinn is... has grown a beard. I know this because he’s sitting opposite me!” or “Lord...” Ernest Marples, who was then the... the much hated minister who was reorganising the motorways in the early ‘60s was “sitting across the room.” So I used to send these things and then I found them 40 years later. It was really quite sad that... that my mother had always kept these things, but I did remind me of these wonderful days sitting in the Terrazza, either waiting for somebody who hadn’t turned up, a date or something, or just getting together to write somebody one of those messages.

(Alasdair Scott Sutherland was talking to Mark Worden) 

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