I first met Chef Nate Appleman at the Monterey Bay Sustainable Seafood Conference, where I tasted his mouthwatering, deeply flavorful Roasted Sardines with Bread Crumbs, Green Garlic, and Mint. I was inspired to order his cookbook, A16 Food+Wine.

What I didn’t know at the time, was that Nate prepared all his recipes for his San Francisco based restaurant A16 with recipes that he discovered while traveling the Campania region. A dedicated “student” of the history, culture, cuisine and oenology of not only Campania, but the other pockets of culture found along Route A16, the cookbook contains a collection of native Italian seafood, meat and Neapolitan style Pizza recipes. You will find bold, hearty eye catchers, such as Summer Vegetable Cianfotta, a coarsely cut selection of fresh, roasted vegetables picked at the height of season, Roasted Butternut Squash with Pancetta and chiles, a boldly flavored vegetable dish that leaves you begging for more, and their signature meatball dish Monday Meatballs, made with pork, beef, proscuitto mixed with grated grana, and more. Since I sat down and read the cookbook cover to cover, I can tell you this is only the tip of the iceberg.

The book makes you want to go the restaurant, and the restaurant makes you want to get on a plane and go to Southern Italy, where you will then rent a car and travel the A16 route yourself.

You can experience the foods and wine of the Campania region by visiting Nate Appleman’s hugely successful restaurant in San Francisco called none other than A16.


By Ellen Walsh