Fresh flavors to catch at Cioppino House

Mar 02, 2018 543

BY: Vanessa Salvia

It’s easy to imagine Italian fishermen returning to the docks of San Francisco around the turn of the century, preparing to make their evening stew from the catch of the day. “What will you chip in” to the pot, the fishermen asked each other. Eventually, the evolving seafood stews they crafted — rich with tomato, wine and herbal flavors — became known as cioppino.

Other sources say cioppino is simply a corruption of the word ciuppin, a northern Italian fish soup. Most cookbooks don’t even try to pin down the origins, because it’s one of those dishes that is shrouded in mystery as thick as San Francisco fog. And really, who cares? Especially when it’s as flavorful a dish as the one at Cioppino House, a cozy eight-table restaurant in Pleasant Hill, just 20 minutes southeast of Eugene.

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