From: Alex Leary
Sent: Tuesday, October 18, 2016 11:48 PM
To: Rutherford, Sarah D. EOP/WHO
Subject: In-town print pool No. 7 Renzi toast, Stefani, FLOTUS praises Batali, lid
See official WH transcript for PM Renzi.
A key passage was him praising FLOTUS speaking skill on the campaign trail. "I know, Michelle, your tomatoes are great. But after the last weeks, let me be very frank -- your speeches are better than your tomatoes. "
He also called POTUS "a Master of Renaissance."
"I come from a city called Florence, so I really -- I love lots of the history of my country. During the Renaissance in Florence, the Masters and students used to work together to produce masterpieces and also a lot of pieces -- masterpieces that have endured across centuries. And these workplace were called botteghe.
"Botteghe was the place in which Masters and students together tried to do better, tried to paint -- new generation tried inside the botteghe to create a comprehensive vision of the future. And I think, Mr. President, dear Barack, this is what you have done for us in this period.
"Eight years, very important for international community, not only for the United States of America. And I think your service was the service of a Master of Renaissance, because you work with us to give us an opportunity and we worked together exactly with the strength of botteghe -- tried to make better. Tried to achieve a special opportunity to new generations."
The pool returned for the entertainment, about 11:10 p.m., in which Gwen Stefani began her set with "The Sweet Embrace."
While waiting for Stefani, pool could hear FLOTUS giving a farewell of sorts. "We're going to miss it," she said.
She praised Renzi's "energy and passion" and that she and the POTUS would visit Italy, "maybe more than you like."
FLOTUS also thanked the White House kitchen staff and the guy with "funny shoes," Mario Batali, who prepared the final state dinner. She said Batali and Rachael Ray have been big advocates for her healthy eating initiatives.
FLOTUS then introduced Gwen Stefani, "who has a little Italian in her."
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