Judy Ann Santos recounts dining experience at Gucci Garden

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  • When Judy Ann Santos and hubby Ryan Agoncillo went to Italy last April, one of the unexpected highlights of their two-week tour was their truffle-hunting expedition.

    Truffle is highly prized as food, and was dubbed “the diamond of the kitchen” by French gourmet Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin.

    Juday told PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) in an exclusive interview July 27, on the set of Starla in Victoria Sports Tower, “Nung pinaplano namin yung mga tours, hindi ko naisip mag-truffle hunting.

    “Kasi hindi ko naman alam na puwede pala yung truffle hunting. Lumabas lang siya habang nagse-search ako.

    “Nagkataon, season ng truffle nung dumating kami sa Florence, ‘tapos patapos na yung white truffles.

    “E, yung white truffles yung isa sa mga pinakamahirap hanapin, e, so siyempre, merong orientation, may lecture, ganyan.”

    Accompanying them to their truffle hunt was their Italian guide and his hunting dogs.

    Pigs are also used to hunt truffles.

    Juday (her nickname) continued, “Baboy talaga, pero yung parang… yung baboy kasi kinakain agad [ang truffle].

    “Yung aso puwedeng pigilan… pero hindi, kinakain din! Pag hindi mo nahabol [ang aso] kakainin din niya.

    “Puwede mo siyang i-handle agad na huwag niyang kainin. Pero kailangan mabilis ka.

    “Pag may naamoy na siyang truffles…Very specific yung dog, hindi naman puwedeng kung sinong dog lang.

    “Ano talaga siya, pang-hunt talaga siya, very sharp yung pang-amoy nila [sa truffles].

    The trip to Italy was actually a triple celebration—Ryan’s birthday was last April 10, their 9th wedding anniversary was on April 28; Judy Ann’s birthday was May 11.

    SURPRISE DINNER TREAT

    For their anniversary, the couple was able to book dinner at a very upscale restaurant, which doubles as a restaurant and museum.

    “Yung anniversary nagkataon lang din na sa Gucci Garden kami nakakain.”
    Gucci Garden is a well-known establishment in Italy that doubles as a restaurant and museum.

    It was established in Florence by Guccio Gucci in 1921.
    Judy Ann elaborated, “‘Tapos, yung Gucci Garden na yun, ang chef dun, ang nag-create ng menu na chef dun, si Massimo,” referring to Massimo Bottura, an Italian restaurateur and the chef patron of Osteria Francescana—a three-Michelin-star restaurant, which ranked number 1 in The World’s 50 Best Restaurants in 2015, 2016, and 2018, according to CNN.

    Their Italian vacation ranks high as one of their best trips as a couple.
    Given the chance to do it all over again, they want to bring their three kids, Yohan, Lucho, and Luna.
    Judy Ann is currently preparing for her TV comeback via the ABS-CBN teleserye, Starla.
    She is also gearing up for the new season of her online cooking show, Judy Ann’s Kitchen.

    r. Gonzales, pep

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