Slow food is a phrase that seems to have entered the language although no one’s quite sure whether it means you should cook slowly, eat slowly, or if it’s something to do with slow service in restaurants. In fact it is the name of a movement that originated in Italy in the eighties and has since spread worldwide. Slow Food — Cucina Lento in Italian — has its headquarters in Bra near Genoa in northern Italy and was started by journalist and gourmet Carlo Petrini in 1986 in response to the advent of fast food. The Slow Food organisation now has 83 000 members with 1 000 convivia (branches) in over 130 countries. There are two Slow Food convivia in South Africa, in Johannesburg and Cape Town.