MANIFEST CROSTINI You've seen the unmistakable banner in the window, and you've noticed that Fleming's has left the snug corner space at Third Avenue and Madison Street. Now it's time for local restaurant impresario Paul Mackay's newest eatery to give us the old razzle-dazzle, with some help from ex-Tulio chef Walter Pisano. After ushering El Gaucho, Waterfront Seafood Grill, and Rippe's into the world, Mackay is playing midwife to Troiani, an upscale Italian bar and grill whose Northwest accent and tentative menu items (including basil-cured tuna with potato caponata and crispy duck with duck confit, corona beans, and dried figs) inspire hope amidst a flurry of downtown and Pioneer Square Italian restaurants that range from redoubtable (Il Terrazo Carmine) to merely redeemable (Brindisi). Troiani opens Monday, Dec. 1; for advance reservations, call 206-624-4060. POULTRY EXPERTISE Is it just us, or is the phrase "chicken husbandry" inherently funny? Seattle Tilth hopes to spread chicken awareness with its upcoming City Chickens class. We'll let the nice PR people take it from here: "You will learn the most important considerations in caring for a small flock of hens in a limited space. Topics will include chicken physiology, behavior, health, nutrition, housing, and regulations. You will also learn about the wide variety of chicken breeds. The benefits and drawbacks of poultry keeping will be discussed." Drawbacks? Inconceivable. If you're jonesing to join the chicken cognoscenti, Saturday, Nov. 15, is the date to save. Call 206-633-0451 for more information. WORD FEAST Over the centuries, food has been the subject of paintings, photographs . . . even macram鮠Only poetry, however, can make the edible incredible. In verse, the foodstuffs we love (or love to loathe) transcend their physical reality, becoming symbolic, romantic, lyrical. Four local poets will give life to food-related works by Frost, Levertov, Neruda, and others on Thursday, Nov. 6, at Highline Community College. Call 206-878-3710 to find out more about the feast. EAT WELL . . . . . . and still have a clear conscience: The good folks at the nonprofit Institute of Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP) have teamed up with GRACE (Global Resource Action Center for the Environment) to create an exhaustive Web site listing farmers, ranchers, processors, and stores committed to sustainable organic and humane food- production practices. The Eat Well Guide is a work-in-progress, so if you don't see someone listed who deserves to be, let the makers know. It's all on view starting this week at www.eatwellguide.org/. MYSTIC PIZZA Thank goodness the fine folk at the USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service are looking out for us. Since Oct. 22, thanks to them, products labeled "pizza" will no longer need to contain tomato sauce, cheese, or bread-based crust. In addition, products labeled "meat pizza" will be able to cut the amount of meat in the mix from 12 percent to 2 percent. Put that in your pepperoni and smoke it! Food and/or beverage news? E-mail Hot Dish at email@example.com.