You may at some point while staying in the Midwest grow tired of going out for a burger and fries. You may even, at some point, decide that meeting a friend for dinner shouldn’t feel hurried but instead that it should unravel over a couple of hours and several empty plates. Perhaps one day you’ll also decide that your dining experience should be just that, an experience; one that takes you further away from your daily responsibilities with each fork-full of pasta and with every sip of seductive tannin-rich wine. And when that time comes, remember Piedmont in Downtown Marquette. Piedmont feels lavish, like a lodge in the foothills of the Italian Alps, but with the sensation of your own dining room where friends gather to eat and laugh, and eat a little more. Rustic hardwood tables and floors flank the dining hall, dragging your eyes across the room as you relax into your dark leather barrel back chair booth. Antlers adorn each wall mounted light fixture providing the room with the elegance, energy and strength typically reserved for a chalet. A marble fireplace surrounded by soft leather couches invites you to stay a little a longer to enjoy dessert and a digestivo after your meal. I recommend the flourless chocolate cake with chocolate ganache followed by a cup of coffee and Fernet or Limoncello. _DMD9657 (1)     Straightaway my dining companion and I are greeted by Marcella, our server and gastronomic tour guide through the foothills of northern Italy where the Piedmont’s menu is inspired. After receiving our antipasto platter of cured meats and pickled vegetables, we were given time to review the menu further and simply chat amongst ourselves. Apart from Google searching my way through a few types of pasta, which was actually quite fun, I found the menu uncomplicated with dishes described only by their ingredients. Think traditional wood-fired pizzas, foraged mushrooms, truffles, bucatini, aromatic sauces divined from some of Italy’s greatest red wines, and fresh herbs cut with citrus. Once I came to the decision to order tagliatelle with red wine braised pork shoulder topped with gremolata, Marcella directed our conversation to the wine selection specific to the Piedmont region of Italy. Rattling off names I had heard before but had evaded my tongue Marcella described the differences between Barolo, Barbaresco, and Barbera wines with a soft smile on her face. It was an astonishing display of knowledge and care for the menu, which is another example of the attention to detail at the Piedmont. Unknown-1   And how was that tagliatelle with red wine braised pork shoulder and gremolata? Well, let’s just say that after the first bite I almost regretted offering to share it with my companion. Emphasizing a dedication to the deep earthy flavors of Northern Italy, Piedmont offers cuisine that feels authentic. The restaurant encouragers you slow down and savor each moment between sips of Barolo wine and nibbles of your antipasto, which is exactly what you should do. As the saying goes, “when in Rome!” For More Info Find the Piedmont Here: Or Call (906) 315-8103   Words and Photos By Dominic M. Davis