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It’s a Teca Thing

Nope, ‘teca’ has got nothing to do with technology, in case you were wondering. ‘teca’ is a suffix used in Italian to denote a place which specializes in something or other.

There is the paninoteca, which does sandwiches , although many bars advertise their sandwich making capability by using the combination of ‘bar and paninoteca’. Next in line is the ‘pinacoteca‘, which has nothing whatsoever to do with food or pine. A ‘pinacoteca’ is an art gallery.

I used to confuse paninoteca and pinacoteca, and I still do, but on purpose. Well, that’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.

There are more ‘teca’s’ too.

Game Teca

Another ‘teca’ you may hear of is the ‘ludoteca’, and if, by some small chance you remember a game called ‘ludo’ then you will have an idea as to what a ‘ludoteca’ is all about. Indeed, it’s a place where you can go and play games, generally board games. There are a couple that I know of near me in Milan, but I’ve never been. Actually, in these days of Playsation and Wii, I’m surprised that these places are still around. I guess eventually the ‘tech’ may kill off this type of ‘teca’.

Wine Teca

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Stop reading, start speaking

Stop translating in your head and start speaking Italian for real with the only audio course that prompt you to speak.

Not finished yet. How about a ‘vinoteca’ which is a sort of a cross between wine shop and wine bar? The term is also in use outside Italy, and a quick Google will reveal the presence of around 400,000 instances of the word ‘vinoteca’ all over the world wide web. Even if the correct Italian term is ‘enoteca’, not ‘vinoteca’.

Poltena Teca

Last, but, as they say, by no means least, is my favourite and recent discovery. With thanks to friend Michela, for having put me on to the existence of the ‘polentoteca’. Yep, that’s right, it’s a place that does lot’s of dishes with a polenta accompaniment.

Should you wish to try one out, then the Chalet Gabriele above Bellagio on lake Como is one such place. Michela did mention a place near Bellagio, and said it was very good, so I imagine this is the place. It’s is around 1000 metres above Lake Como and 12 kilometres from Bellagio. There is a map here, should you feel the urge to check it out. Possibly not great summer food, poltena, but the location looks wonderful from the photos on the site. This means this type of ‘teca’ is well worth a visit at any time of the year, I imagine.

End of Teca Trip

That’s the end of my brief trip into Italy’s ‘teca’ world. Now if you see a word ending with ‘teca’, you will know what it is.

Please let me know if I have missed an all important ‘teca’ or too.

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