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Archive for the ‘Italy’ Category

O Vittorio’s – local food, elegantly

In English please, Italy on novembre 6, 2008 at 7:11 pm

Soft bread (made of puff pastry) filled with soft cheese

 
Soft bread (made of puff pastry) filled with soft cheese

Monday 25th August 2008

On our way back home from Sicily, my girlfriend and I, after a long trip by car, decided to stop for dinner in Liguria, a region in the North of Italy.

I had already been there, and I wanted to taste some good local receipes.

I wanted to taste their special soft bread (made of puff pastry) filled with soft cheese, but I meant finding some fast food restaurant, just to eat and go in order not to drive too late at night.

We went out the highway at Recco (in the East of Liguria, not so far from Genua) and right away we found that restaurant called O Vittorio, just at the first stop on the right.

Here’s the address:

Da Ö Vittorio http://www.daovittorio.it

Via Roma, 160

Recco

Telefono: 018574029 – 018575896 reservation recommended

We suddenly found out it wasn’t a cheap take away restaurant, but we decided to sit down, since we read they made the special bread we wanted.

The waiter made us sit down at one of the few tables available that night, he recommended us to book next time, since they had many reserved tables even if it was Monday and August.

Before giving us the menu, the waiter told us some story related to the food they serve. The cook some special kind of pasta imprinted with anything the guests would like to read on it (especially in wedding occasions) and some other ancient local food tale. It was amazing listening to him and our appetite was raising.

We told him we wanted to taste their Recco’s focaccia , their special soft bread with soft cheese. The waiter explained us they serve it as a starter, so we could have a small dish of Focaccia and then something else.

We chose the trofie al pesto as a main course, their local pasta with their typical basil sauce.

The focaccia was cooked following the original recipe, baked in a round big metal pan. It was so good, so tasty, we ordered and shared one more dish.

Even the basil sauce was delicious, it was fresh and light on our stomach.

At last, we chose a dessert with apple, served with cinnamon ice cream. Great choice.

The wine-list was well-provided at O Vittorio’s. I chose a red, full-bodied wine from Lunae cellar (http://www.cantinelunae.it)Iknew that supplier and I was sure it would be a good choice, and so it was.

The bill was around 60 euros divided into two people.

I advice you al to taste O Vittorio’s food if you’re travelling around Genua. You won’t be disappointed!

Le grüpie – the mangers, good chef, delay in service, short wine-list

In English please, Turin on novembre 3, 2008 at 10:59 am

Saturday 25th October 2008

My girlfriend, I and three friends of ours.
We went there because we knew one of the owners and we wanted to taste their food.
Here’s the complete address:
Le grüpie
corso Sommeiller, 27
Torino, Italy
0115089239
legrupie@libero.it booking recommended

This restaurant opened a few months ago, they serve food at lunch and at dinner.
We sat down at our table. At once, one of the two owners offered us an outside-menu entrée.
It was a dish of violet potato chips (special french potatoes coloured by some dye, coming from the ground). We appreciated it and liked them a lot.
Afterwards, before even showing us the menu, the waiter-owner adviced us taking their marinated salmon with small lemon cubes. We all found it delicious and we would have had some more.
As a first course, my girlfriend and I chose the pasta a la Siciliana, with their special baked ricotta cheese, olives and fresh tomatoes. Some other friends of ours chose the spaghetti amatriciana a typical Roman dish, with bacon, chilli pepper, tomatoe sauce and a special tasty white sauce.
Everybody liked them a lot.

We waited no more than 20 minutes between the entrée and the first course, that was pretty acceptable.

But afterwards some unpleasant problems happened.

After having finished our good pasta the waiter came asking if we wanted something more as a second course, but he didn’t wait for our answers as he ran away telling us he would come in a minute.

He came in more than half an hour. Even if our conversation was good and interesting we started to be less hungry and more sleepy. The digestion had started, so only two of us decided to share a dish of second course.

We were lucky: the restaurant had saved just one second course for us. They had run out of everything!

We tasted their octopus, but it wasn’t as tasty as we hoped and he was served in a very similar way as the salmon we had taken before.

At last, the desserts: we could choose among a variety of two desserts and a sorbet. My girlfriend and I decided to share a crème brulée (as they had written in the menu) but it was actually a catalan cream with non burnt sugar on its top.
What’s more: the wine-list. It showed us a really poor choice. Only one type from Turin and very few from elsewhere. The owner adviced us taking their home-made wine: it was a very low quality wine, almost violet coloured water, and they made us pay 12 euros for it! (I had payed 12 euros fo a good Dolcetto D’Alba at L’Acino restaurant the day before and I found this unacceptable).

The bill was 166 euros divided into five people. It would have been a great price if only the good quality of most of the recipes would get along with a good service and wine-list.

Let’s hope the reason of all these unpleasant troubles was the recent opening of the restaurant.

La ruota – the wheel where you eat your fill

In English please, Turin on ottobre 27, 2008 at 10:37 pm
La ruota - the Wheel

La ruota - the Wheel

24th October 2008

That weekend I was waiting for some friends of mine who came from Como to spend some days with me in Torino.

I had reserved a table in a cheap restaurant outside the city, it was a place I used to know, so we hadn’t any surprises but we enjoyed our familiar, abundant, home made, local meal.

Here’s the address:

La ruota

S. Maria Pieve Street, 29
10060 Scalenghe (TO) 40 minutes by car from the centre of Torino – direction Pinerolo
011-9861701

Reservation recommended

La Ruota restaurant goes on like this: they don’t show the menu so you can’t choose what you eat. The waitress offers you everything they have from the kitchen and you can eat it or decline.

There are many starters, two first courses, some second courses, and the desserts; you can also have some more of any dish if you ask.

They continue serving food until you ask them to stop, when you can’t bear eating anything else.

Here’s what the kitchen offers:

Starters:

A selection of cold cuts (salami etc…)

Cheese with spices and garlic

Aggiughe al verde (a typical food in Torino, salted anchovies with parsley green sauce)

Spiced pork sausage with mashed potatoes

Vitello tonnato (a typical starter in Torino, veal slices with caper and tuna fish sauce)

I primi:

Risotto with red chicory

Pasta with tomato sauce

The second courses:

Il fritto misto alla piemontese (mixed fried food piemontese way) this is a very typical dish in Torino, they serve some fried salted and sweet food together. You can have fried sausage and chicken, fried slices of apple, fried sweets and bisquits. You have to taste it.

Roasted veal, baked guinea fowl, which we all declined.

French fries.

Fruit with ice cream

Coffee

The meal was served with all the water and wine we wanted. I drank a white wine from Langhe 2007 (a special land in Piemonte region).

The bill was 18 euro a testa, we were satisfied and full, but smiling.

This restaurant is not suitable for anniversary or romantic dinners.

L’acino – in the centre of Torino good food and wine

In English please, Turin on ottobre 27, 2008 at 7:16 pm

23rd October 2008

That evening I decided to host a young guy met through the couchsurfing community (www.couchsurfing.com). It was the first time I had the couchsurfing experience and I advice it to you all.

Jo, my surfer-guest, was a belgian boy who wanted to visit Torino before going back to his Country and after having met some other couchsurfers in Rome and Bologna.

After a walk around Torino we decided to have dinner in a typical restaurant, I wanted him to taste Torino food, one of the best regional food in Italy, in my opinion.

The restaurant’s name is L’acino, a wine bar with kitchen in the heart of the quadrilatero romano, a sort of latin quartier in Torino.

Here’s the right address:

L’acino

Via S. Domenico, 2
10122 Torino (TO)
011 5217077

Jo’s favourite food is meat, so I recommended him tasting two of the best known and appreciated meat dishes in Torino.

He took the “Vitello Tonnato”, veal meat slices covered by a sauce made with tuna fish, caper and mayonnaise. After dinner he told me he was afraid he would dislike that sauce, but once he had tasted it, he loved it. Afterwards he took a braised beef with Roero 2004 wine sauce and potatoes. He liked that dish too.

Personally, I chose some vegetarian dishes, I love cheese and I went for it.

First of all I had a great entrée, that was for me a revelation. I chose a soufflé made of Castelmagno (a typical Torino cheese) with fig jam and honey. It was awsome, I highly recommend it to people who like sweet and sour food. I tasted it slowly to make it last longer.

Afterwards, I took typical italian pasta filled with goat cheese, with butter and sage sauce, classical but very good.

Our meal was served with typical Torino bread-stick, that Jo didn’t know and appreciated a lot.

We drank a very good wine bottle: Dolcetto D’Alba 2007.

The bill was around 50 euros, not bad at all.

Jo was used tasting pizza and lasagne, maybe he thought italians only ate those things.

I’m happy I let him know more about italian food.