Dear Alfonso

An Italian Feast of Love and Laughter

Mary Contini

Date Published :
November 2017
Publisher :
Illustration :
b/w integrated plates and 8pp color plate section
Format Available    QuantityPrice
ISBN : 9781780274805
Pages : 288
Dimensions : 9.45 X 6.7 inches
In stock
ISBN : 9781780275277
Pages : 368
Dimensions : 7.8 X 5.1 inches
In stock


‘This is how I was born. At 7.30 a.m. at the Istituto Annunziata in Napoli on 1 May 1925…’

So begins a manuscript, handwritten by Carlo Contini, which lay forgotten and unread for years. The scrawling script unfolds an incredible tale of poverty, adventure and survival which Carlo had not shared with his family during his life time, but left as a moving and extraordinary legacy for them.

Inspired by this document, Carlo’s daughter-in-law, Mary Contini, relates in her inimitable style the story of Carlo’s life from wartime Pozzuoli, near Naples, and Genoa, and eventually to Edinburgh, where he arrived in 1952 on a three-month visa to learn English. Here his life was to change forever when he met Olivia Crolla and married into her family business, the delicatessen Valvona & Crolla. His experiences and background were a key part of the development of that fledgling business.

Heart-warming, moving and filled with laughter and love, Dear Alfonso is a wonderful celebration of food, family and friendship.

About The Author

Mary Contini is the bestselling author of numerous books involving food, including Dear Francesca, Dear Olivia, Dear Alfonso and Valvona & Crolla: A Year at an Italian Table. She appears regularly on radio and TV, and at literary festivals throughout the UK.

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