By Bill Covaleksi
You don’t have to fly too high in Philly foodie circles to run into Emilio Mignucci of DiBruno Bros. Totally at the epicenter of Philadelphia food culture, Emilio is the guy who lifted his grandparents’ adored little Italian market shop (along with cousin Bill) into a convenient and cozy culinary empire. This Philly native first appeared to me at The Brewer’s Plate a few years back, his extended hand offering an enticing chunk of cheese, while wearing that wide smile of his. Chesire cat-like, his smile promises you that he knows something delicious that you do not — yet. So you follow his lead into gastronomic revelation.
One night at Marc Vetri’s Amis, Emilio had me and my wife busting open with laughter as he drew, in great detail, his own lovely wife’s fascination with Wawa coffee, and the daily ritual that her craving forces him into. He travels the world to discover new food products, and yet, is not beyond hitting the Wawa every morning. Such is this salt-of-the-earth gourmand.
This is part of why we want you to meet him. We are bringing Emilio and some of his favorite culinary discoveries to Victory on November 5th as we Celebrate Italy With DiBruno Bros.
Travel from Apulia to Umbria to Tuscany as your tongue is thoroughly amused by duck proscuitto, white anchovies, soppressatto and much, much more. It will be a feast for your mind as well. In his role as Vice President of Product Pioneering, this trained chef is passionately articulate on the origins and virtues of every product he selects. And our meal that evening is built around his favorite finds.
I just hope he tells the story of the magical polenta. After hearing his tale of the delicious treat, I desperately want to go to that place with Emilio and taste it for myself. Regardless of the stories he chooses to tell, you’ll still get to see the smile as his mind drifts back to the memories of flavor fully appreciated.