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Found: La dolce vita 

Long Story Short

When's the last time you really spazzed out over a cookie?

I'm not talking an all-out Cookie Monster assault, crumbs flying this way and that, but a slow savoring of a sugary bite. More of a dainty sampling as if at high tea, because you wished that each bite's flavor would continue to linger, like Novocaine after dental work.

Before this past March, I certainly couldn't have told you off the top of my head the last time a cookie really grabbed me by the soul. I don't even eat cookies much, never mind go searching for epic renditions. Sure, there's often a perfectly fine chocolate chip cookie or some other commoner that's a pleasure to dance with in a moment, but deconstructed, so many of those feel like something you could've baked at home provided a free half-hour and a basic online-recipe search.

And then I met chef Salvatore Giacalone, and as you'll read right here, I was quickly reminded just how great a good cookie can be.

For my taste, his dolce a mandorla (almond cookies) are practically the pinnacle of pastry prowess: soft, light and bursting with sweet almond essence. Pure beauty.

A fortunate encounter with this talented Sicilian baker led me to an unassuming Pueblo strip mall, where if those particular cookies don't bake your cake, you're sure to find some authentic treat that will. This week: a true taste of la dolce vita.

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