Eleonora was a simple girl of an irresistible charm. Her long brown hair fell softly onto her shoulders and her hazel eyes were brightened with intelligence and sweetness. Michele had known her for a long time, but only recently had he found the courage to confess his feelings to her. She had willingly accepted a couple of dates: the first was a walk in the center of Bologna, where they got a hot chocolate in a nice place and chatted for about an hour before returning to their jobs. For the second date Michele invited her to share a guided tour of a dairy where they have been producing Parmigiano Reggiano for more than a century. Here they discovered the true story of the area’s excellent cheese, appreciated at all latitudes, and at the end Michele insisted on buying two medium-aged pieces, one for himself and one for her. It was an unusual gift which, to be honest, had dampened her feelings towards him a little.
While she was thinking about these things, Eleonora was preparing for the third date. It was St. Valentine’s Day evening and she didn’t really know what to expect: the moon rose timidly in the starry sky and a cold breeze caressed the city. Quickly returning to reality, the girl put on her coat and went down the stairs, immediately getting into the car and greeting Michele with a fleeting kiss on the cheek. She was wearing an elegant dress and Michele, his heart beating fast, offered her his best smile.
“I hope you don’t mind, but this evening I thought about not going to the usual restaurant. I would like to offer you a dinner prepared by me, if you agree.” “I didn’t know you were also an expert chef,” Eleonora said laughing. “That’s fine, but what’s on the menu?” “You’ll find out.” After starting the engine, Michele added: “You know, I’ve always liked cooking. I watched my grandmother when I was a child. She had hands that seemed magical: she managed dough with incredible naturalness.” “You were very lucky. I didn’t get to meet my grandparents.” Eleonora replied, trying to hide with her voice the sadness that the thought had aroused in her. “I am sorry.” Michele noticed the turn the conversation might soon take and immediately tried to lift her spirits. “So are you curious to know the name of the main dish?” “Sure!”
The boy let a few seconds of suspense pass before answering her. Then he began with an enthusiastic tone: “Well, you’ll be the first to try my special Risotto with Parmesan fondue, crumbled taralli and Balsamic Vinegar.” “Wow that sounds great!” said Eleonora. “But don’t tell me…” “That’s right, I’m going to use that Parmesan we got on our second date!” The two exchanged knowing glances: the silence between them was full of emotions. Finally, a hearty laugh in two voices filled the car, as Michele pulled over to park in front of his house.