The Dish: Sea Salt owner and chef Fabrizio Aielli on Italian food in America, fresh ingredients and more

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“In the past people thought spaghetti and meatballs or linguini Alfredo defined Italian food. Heavy sauces covered in garlic and cheese,” chef Fabrizio Aielli said. “But this is not Italian food.”

On Nov. 6, at his restaurant Sea Salt in St. Petersburg, Aielli is hosting one of seven Immersion Dinners being held around Tampa Bay in conjunction with the Dalí Museum’s current food-focused exhibit “Ferran Adria: The Invention of Food.” The sold-out dinner will have a carnival theme that aims to celebrate Aielli’s home city of Venice, Italy, and to show diners what, exactly, Italian food can be: Nitrogen popcorn and kumamoto oysters will reflect a foggy day in Venice; a mini cone of peanut butter foie gras and a glass of rose brut champagne will transport guests through St. Mark’s Square; seafood and black ink risotto will nod to the city’s famous waterways.