Alessandro/Alejandro is a Calabrese bus driver/fava bean farmer of Spanish origin. He is unfamiliar with the proper construction of an email address (you try telling him it doesn’t start with “www”), but is a tenacious and prolific purveyor of beans. He makes a formidable comic duo with Piero, the Hazelnut King of Central Calabria.
Nazareno Circosta, alternately known as The Shaman of the Bees or The Bee Whisperer, is a Calabrese beekeeper and honey-maker. During the spring and summer months he keeps his bees in the mountains of inland Calabria on the property of his now-dilapidated childhood home, bringing them to the warmer coast during the winter. Despite leaving school as a boy, Nazareno is well-versed in the numerous scientific studies exploring apian brains, behavior, and pertinence to life as we know it. Nazareno will gladly share his wealth of knowledge, but first he’s going to take you to that rock where he was almost struck by lightening at age 12.
Hardwoods have more minerals than softwoods, but, according to The Forest Encyclopedia, their smoke flavor is influenced more by the climate and soil in which they are grown than the species of wood. This is very important to note, especially when you are caught up in the game of deciding which wood to use for flavor. This means that the differences between hickory grown in Arkansas and hickory grown in New York may be greater than the differences between hickory and pecan grown side by side.