Let's just get this out there, #MasterofNone Season 2 is just as good as, if not better than, Season 1. Running themes of love, beauty, adulthood, and sincerity run through the show, all branded with comedian #AzizAnsari's characteristic lighthearted yet deeply thoughtful flair. At the end of the first season, we saw Aziz's Dev Shah take off to Italy after a difficult breakup to pursue his pasta-making dreams. Dev has a deep love and appreciation for great food, so it's no surprise he decided to go to one of the most culinarily rich countries in the world.
Below you'll find a little guide to the cities he visits in the first two episodes of Season 2, so you too can know where he gets all those delicious plates of pasta!
(Full disclosure: I lived in Bologna, Italy (about 40 minutes away from Modena) and I can fully attest to the insane deliciousness of the food.)
The City: Modena
Located in the beautiful north-east region of Emilia-Romagna, Modena is a small, quiet city that boasts an impressive food culture. Home to the famous gastronomy school Scuola di Cucina Girasole, in addition to the (now) second best restaurant IN THE WORLD, Osteria Francescana (more on that later), Dev really knows how to pick 'em, and I say that in a totally non sarcastic way. Also, that balsamic vinegar you like originally comes from Modena. Alloooora!
The Café: Menomoka
Dev meets up with his Italian friends in the sweet cafe Menomoka in Modena. Also, here's a fun little Easter Egg for you Italian rom-com aficionados: The dashing Ricardo Scamarcio and the beautiful Alessandra Mastronardi (the couple) also played lovers in 2007's Prova a Volare (Try to Fly).
The Eats: Hosteria Giusti
Before he knew anyone in the town, Dev made a solo reservation for his birthday lunch at Hosteria Giusti, a tasty, informal restaurant in Modena. Luckily, he didn't have to sit alone. Unluckily, he lost her phone number later. Doh!
Here we have the aforementioned second best restaurant in the world, Osteria Francescana. Originally, Dev just showed the place from the outside to his friend Arnold, wistfully imagining eating there — if only the waitlist weren't months long. Turns out, Arnold totally had his buddy's back and had already found a way to maneuver a reservation.
Dev and Arnold head Bar Schiavoni after Arnold shows up. As you can see, they're there to dig into those famous sausage sandwiches and do their first catch-up session.
The Drinks: Archer
Here's where Dev and Shannon go for a drink — right before she gets into a taxi and his phone (with her number in it) gets stolen.
Enoteca Compagnia Del Taglio
Dev gets together with his friends at the Enoteca Compagnia del Taglio to celebrate his birthday. Tanti auguri!
The Town: Pienza
The beautiful town of Pienza is located among the rolling hills of Tuscany. Known for its incredible pecorino cheese (made from sheep's milk), Pienza is worth a stop for a tasting (degustazione) before heading on to Montepulciano (a.k.a. wine heaven). Getting there via vespa is obvs the preferred method if you really want to do this right.
Il Cacio Di Ernello
Definitely stop at Il Cacio di Ernello to try the pecorino. I did, and after that moment pecorino has been my favorite cheese. Pecorino is my favorite cheese! Pecorino is my favorite...cheese!
Have you already bought your ticket to Italy?