Holy Cannoli

First race of the year is hours away and the typical Italian race fare last night was laid out in front of us. Race food is race food and by in large one can guess what will be served without top much creativity, perhaps with a minor spin on local cuisine. Le verdure consists of spinach, carrots, tomatoes, corn, and peas; chicken or bistec will always comprise the requisite protein, and pasta with the occasional offering of rice is bankable no matter where you are.This being Italy, pasta is king, so for breakfast, lunch, and dinner pasta ru(l)es the day. A similar story therefore plays out in the morning hours as well. Namely, pasta is offered with parm' cheese and exquisite olive oil that is just now beginning to see the likes of American dinner (and breakfast?) tables. Thinly sliced breakfast meats atop Philadelphia cream cheese and crackers/bread/rice cakes is nearly popular as pasta in Italy, while cereals really aren't that prevalent much to the classic Americans' dismay.The aforementioned is what's called a preface. Never have I seen such an interesting spread as this morning in the midst of the buffet table.Wait fof it... yes, that photo above is a Custom Cannoli Bar.We would be verbally and maybe even physically chastised if we partook in such southern, Calabrian/Sicilian cuisine, even if it would enhance our cultural understanding so it was merely eye candy.Additionally worth pointing out that of the 8 riders here from Liquigas-Cannondale, 7 are from northern Italy which is virtually another country than these southern tipped Mediterraneans. And the eighth, Sicilian teammate is from 200+km west of here... which turns out to be seemingly another country as well. I point that out because they were equally or maybe even more surprised than I was at the custom cannoli bar.And now, we're off to the races fueled on pasta and pasta!