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Bachelor Party Restaurant for September

Hi! I was wondering if you would be able to post what you ended up doing on your weekend. Planning a very similar weekend with same criteria as you and curious to knw what you decided and would do again / change. Thanks!!

Apr 12, 2013
ccinlondon in New Orleans

5 days in HK - food agenda planned!

That is a good idea, can easily go to DTF in Beijing instead. Is there a replacement recommendation? We plan to have drinks at Aqua Spirit beforehand so would like to stay in that area. Would Guo Fu Luo be a good option?

5 days in HK - food agenda planned!

By the way, would anyone be able to let me know which restaurants are casual versus high-end? I think everything is casual except for Lung King Heen and Ming Court but not sure...

5 days in HK - food agenda planned!

Thank you for the advice!! I will adjust accordingly and try out The Manor, GFL and Ming Court instead.

Are there any dishes that you recommend we should order?

5 days in HK - food agenda planned!

Hello! HK is the first leg of our Asia trip (Beijing, Singapore & Bali to follow) in November and was hoping to get feedback from fellow Chowhounders on the below food agenda after reading through all the extensive threads on HK. We have no budget, are not averse to hole in the walls, familiar with Asian food (am Chinese-Canadian), and love to eat.

Day 1
- arrive late afternoon
- Aqua Spirit drinks by 8 pm to see light show
- Dinner: Din Tai Fung, Canton Road

Day 2
- Lunch: Roka (as big fan of restaurant in London)
- Dinner: San Xi Lou

Day 3
- Lunch: Lung King Heen
- Dinner: Lei Garden

Day 4
- Lunch: Yung Kee (would like to go to Yat Lok BBQ but it is too far out to arrange with our sightseeing)
- Dinner: Tim’s Kitchen or Fook Lam Moon - undecided

Day 5
- Lunch: Liu Yuan Pavillion
- Depart for Beijing

Snack restaurants (if any room after lunch!)
- Mak An Kee noodle
- Tsim Chai Kee
- Tasty’s

Thank you for any feedback!

Roka in Hong Kong?

Roka was one of my favorite restaurants when I was living in London and I noticed that it has a location in Hong Kong. Has anyone been and what do they think? We will be in Hong Kong for 4 nights in November so planning out our "food" itinerary based off all the recommendations.

Capri restaurants - review (4 nights)

Enjoy your honeymoon, Positano and Capri are amazing places and please do report back on how you found the restaurants. I hope my recommendations do not disappoint!

May 19, 2011
ccinlondon in Italy

Weekend in Paris

Spent another weekend in Paris so here is the report back:

Friday night – Josephine Chez Dumonet: lovely cosy ambience and our reserved table was the only left empty when we arrived. Half the menu was devoted to the truffle season so I ordered the hard boiled eggs with French baguette sliced into thin strips and smothered in truffle butter. The poached egg was impeccably cooked, yolk soft and creamy and the combination of dipping the bread into the egg was divine. Partner ordered the stuffed morels, which appeared to have a smooth ground pork stuffing similar to pate; they were the largest morels I had ever seen! Mains were the beef bourguignon and the steak tartare. Wish I had read the post about requesting half portions b/c although we saw many other items on the menu that offered half portions, these 2 items did not and we were utterly defeated. The beef bourguignon was everything I had hoped it would be, melt in the mouth chunks of tender beef with a rich gravy of mushrooms and bacon served with a side of simple pasta tossed in butter. The steak tartare was tossed together by our table, really liked the chopped pickles they added to it and was delicious. Shared the millefeuille for dessert but unfortunately, think we got the end piece as there was barely any cream filling unlike the other pieces we had seen being carried past us to other diners. This wasn’t such a bad thing since we were already so full…we did think this place had a really odd wine menu, with many having no prices, a huge selection of very old and expensive wines > €1000 and then a very small selection of wines with prices around €100. But the waiter recommended a bottle and we were pleased with it.

Saturday lunch – Bis du Severo Le: We had originally wanted to book le Severo but it was closed so off we went to its brother restaurant up the block. Started with a large green salad that was perfectly lightly dressed. Shared the cote de boeuf, saignant with frites. Wow! The meat was so flavourful and delicious, each chew elicited plenty of happy ooohs’s and mmmm’s. We’ve ordered this same cut from Paul Bert and L’Ami Louis and I almost have to say this was my favourite piece of meat. Finished the meal with the ultra fluffy crème brulee, great end to the meal.

Saturday dinner – Had wanted to go back to La Rotunde (we go every trip) but it was full due to a rugby game on so the concierge recommended one of Ducasse’s restaurants, Le Rech. I think this was probably overall my favourite meal of the trip, start to finish it was amazing. Started with 6 plates belon and 6 Normandy oysters. Mains were skate pan fried with capers and another white, thicker and much flakier steamed fish (the waiter wasn’t able to think of the English translation) with large fat white beans, side of mashed potatoes (not as buttery as at Robouchon but delish). The fish was so perfectly cooked and the combination of all the flavours really complimented each other. Next was their famous Camembert cheese, a whole small wheel was presented to us and then they wrapped up the remainder for us to take home. It reminded me of a Reblochon and was wonderfully stinky. We ate half the wheel and had to call it quits as dessert was still coming. Good call as it was hands down one of the best desserts I have ever had – the Pain Perdu. Forget the famous éclair on the menu, this was brioche dipped in milk and sugar cooked in brown sugar and served with sea salt caramel ice cream. I don’t have much of a sweet tooth but we were fighting for every last crumb.

Sunday lunch – After the success of last night’s meal, we decided to try another Ducasse restaurant, Benoit. More casual brasserie, great for lunch and again an excellent meal. Started with fat juicy garlicky butter escargots and smoked salmon with warm potato salad. My main was the macaroni with truffles, which was really layered bucatini long tube pasta with béchamel sauce and covered in shavings of black truffle served sitting in a dark brown meat broth. Partner ordered the beef fillet which came with a huge jiggly portion of bone marrow and a side of macaroni gratinee (the trad’n version with cheddar cheese). Dessert was protiteroles which came with fondue sticks to dip into the melted chocolate sauce – thought the profiteroles were a bit hard but all was made well again when the waiter came around with fresh massive madeleines in their tray, still warm. Would definitely go back, good Sunday pick.

Sunday dinner – A bit fooded out now so wanted another seafood option and remembered discussion on the Boards about Les Fables des Fontaines. Decided to order 2 entrees each as wasn’t very hungry so started with 6 boiled langoustines mayonnaise (menu made a point that they were raw before cooking) and 6 “special” oysters. Both dishes were undeniably very fresh, simple and extremely tasty. No need to even dip into the mayo. Next set of entrees were sea urchin served with a citrusy gel and foam in a martini glass and a sea bass tartare with cream foam and caviar. I think there was an entire sea urchin in my glass, everything combined together worked but I couldn’t finish all of it as was a bit too rich near the end. The tartare’s first bite was promising but then for some bizarre reason, it was completely overwhelmed with chopped onion near the middle which ruined the delicate nature of the dish. Dessert somewhat redeemed the meal, the gateau Basque – warm almond filling cake, not too sweet, creamy – thumbs up.

Feb 08, 2011
ccinlondon in France

Weekend in Paris

Ha!! Oops, that doesn't sound right now that I re-read it! There was only one engagement dinner at Le Cinq. I was just lumping Alinea in as a comparison as the cost of the dinner was similar. :)

Jul 06, 2010
ccinlondon in France

Weekend in Paris

Yes - they provided a separate English menu that was folded and slipped discreetly into the back of their regular menu.

Jul 06, 2010
ccinlondon in France

Weekend in Paris

Yes - totally old school. Though I believe they also did that at Le Cinq. In Rome, both Il Pagliaccio and La Pergola also did the same...

Jul 06, 2010
ccinlondon in France

Weekend in Paris

Hello! I returned back from my weekend in Paris and thought I would report back. On Friday evening, we had dinner at Mon Vieil Ami. Had read all the mixed reviews but picked this restaurant purely for convenience as we arrived late on Friday evening and it was a 2min walk from our rented flat. Although I had no issues with the service or the mixed crowd (lovely French party on our LHS, an unfortunate screaming feuding N. American couple on our RHS), the food was totally mediocre. Starters were the house pate an croute and gazpacho with a stuffed tomato of chopped veggies (eggplant, zucchini, etc). Mains were the roast chicken leg with the mushroom risotto and the "mignon de porc" with pureed pumpkin. Finished with the Vacherin glace vanille-fraise recommended by the waiter. Nothing stood out particularly, it was just okay (which we sort of expected). Wouldn't go back, nor recommend it given so many other great options in Paris. I would however recommend getting a Berthillon ice cream which seems to be served from various places all around Ile St. Louis. No need to line-up at the actual store as the line-up is ridiculously long. We waited in a queue way shorter just 2 min away serving the same ice cream - sea salt caramel hands down was the agreed favourite, though hazelnut, normal caramel, coconut and grand marnier were all top notch!

The next day, we went to Bistro Paul Bert (cancelled the rez at Bourse ou la Vie) as we finally got a correct rez at Paul Bert after 4 attempts. Turns out that for Sat lunch, rezzies prob aren't necessary as it was only 60% full. Starters were the ceviche d'espadon (swordfish?) and the gazpacho. Both were delicious, the gazpacho put the one we had at Mon Vieil Ami the night before to head-hanging shame, with bright fresh bursting tomato flavours with just a hint of garlic and coriander. The ceviche was perfectly balanced with lemon-lime juice countered with small bites of deliciously sweet mango. For the main, we shared the cote de boeuf for 2 persons - WOW! Perfectly saignant, the flavour of the beef was without a doubt one of the best we've had. I prefer a more seasoned piece of steak but this didn't matter as they provided a wonderful sea salt for you to sprinkle on to your own liking. Came with a heap of golden fries - they weren't crispy but they were defy home-made and were demolished. One of the best steaks we've had in Paris, which I would put over our meal at L'Ami Louis and Relais de Venise. We then had the cheese tray, love that they still bring you the whole board for you to help yourself - good choice of stinky options - and then finished with the Ile de Flottant which was thankfully super light in a frothy custard sauce. I had looked for the Paris Brest which I had heard about but this wasn't offered on the menu. A gentleman beside us ordered the Baba Rhum and we took bets as to whether he could finish this massive dessert that could have easily fed 4 people - I lost, he ate the whole thing, must have been good! Menu was €32 for 3 courses I think, with an extra €6 supplement for the cote de boeuf. Ranking 8.5/10

We had dinner at Le Gaigne - lovely cosy restaurant. I'm glad we picked this place for dinner as it was quiet and romantic, and tiny - I counted only 20 seats in the restaurant. Started with the millefeuille de legumes and the sauteed seasonal mushrooms, onion marmalade and organic egg omelette. Mains were the roast "Noir de Bigorre" suckling pig with Basque black pudding and Filet of Brill stuffed with with champignons and shallots; broad beans and sauteed lotus root. Everything was beautifully presented. The starters were good, but didn't blow me away. I thought the mushrooms were wonderful, but didn't like the cubed omelette which was a bit heavy and tough for my liking. The suckling pig description was a bit misleading and perhaps lost in translation on the English menu - it was more a sliced pork loin with the middle part stuffed with cubes of liver and other internal goodies. The small amount of pork around this filling was amazingly moist and tasty though. The clear winner of the evening was my stuffed brill. Light, tender and flaky and the sliced crunchy lotus roots! I had never had lotus root served like this before. Coming from an Asian heritage, I've only had this in soups or are completely cooked in vegetable dishes but in this dish, they were finely sliced, and barely cooked, almost like a veggie chip. Dessert was a molten chocolate cake with blueberry - okay. Overall, we thought the meal was lovely - we'd give it a 7.5/10.

Lunch on Sunday was at La Cagouille, a nice trek through Paris on a beautiful day. I thought it was a nice touch that they bring you a bowl of small clams to start the meal. Appies were the fines des claires oysters, razor clams in a buttery sauce, and salmon sashimi. Everything was super fresh and tasted of the sea - I'd prob give the salmon sashimi a pass, it was cut a bit too thick for sashimi. We shared the grilled John Dory fish served with a side of fettuccini and we ordered a side plate of potatoes. Again, the fish was undeniably fresh, grilled to perfection. Finished with a strawberry millefeuille. Highly recommend this place for a light seafood lunch, would recommend booking the terrace as it was a beautiful day outside. They wouldn't seat us outside as we didn't have a rez but we noted that many tables of 2 were available outside throughout our entire meal. It didn't matter - the seafood was well worth the hour walk to / from our flat!

Our last meal in Paris was at Pierre Gagnaire. I don't have the menu in front of me, which they gave as a souvenir, but I did enjoy my meal here very much. It wasn't as molecular gastronomy as I expected - not a single foam in sight, thankfully - but the food was innovative, thought-provoking and often made our eyebrows rise in wonder. There are countless little bites to begin your meal, what stood out for me was the olive oil which had the most intense flavour. I was disappointed that they didn't leave it behind so I could soak it up with their house bread (3 types - milk bread, 3 wheat, and traditional). The teeny weeny tuna and jam macaroon was a surprisly tasty combination as well. We both had the tasting menu - I got the menu without the prices but my husband said that the starters were in the price range of €150. The tasting menu was €265 which seemed like a good deal considering the a la carte prices. It was 5-6 courses, the standouts for me was the blue swimmer crab claw on an "egg" of vegetables - it looked like a fried egg but was stuffed with julienned veggies and the milk lamb with cumin. I'll try to post the full menu when I get home. Before the parade of desserts, there was a 3 cheese course - my fav was the goat cheese served with a splash of German beer and honey. There were five desserts - one would have been plenty but yes, I ate all of them. I remembered the strawberry vacherin, the rice pudding, and the chocolate banana nut tower as particularly delish. I didn't love the sour cherry dessert and for the life of me, can't remember the 5th dessert. I enjoyed every single dish placed in front of me and was delighted that when I left the restaurant, although I was full, I didn't feel like it was over the top like how I've felt after leaving similar restaurants. Was it worth it? Yes, I do think so. Comparatively speaking, I'd rank it third out of the Michelin 3* restaurants I've been to after Le Bernadin and Fat Duck. Miles ahead of La Pergola in Rome. Price wise, I think it was similar to our engagement dinner at Le Cinq and Alinea in Chicago but I would say this meal would edge out both restaurants (though Alinea was much more experimental and had 26 plates!). The chef did come out and greet each table, if you want a picture, he's more than happy to take you to the kitchen for a quick tour and pic. A wonderful experience and thrilled that we went…

Jul 06, 2010
ccinlondon in France

Paris trip report

Thanks for the report Windy! I am planning on going to Brouse ou La Vie for a steak frites lunch in a few weeks - seems like the steak has gotten fine reviews. What did you think of the frites?

Jun 16, 2010
ccinlondon in France

Weekend in Paris

Thank you for that link. I did call Le Bis du Severo but they are closed that Saturday for special circumstances, he did say that they are normally open but unfortunately this is an exception that falls the weekend I am there. I will try calling Bistro Paul Bert closer to the date as for some reason, the person who answered the phone wouldn't take my reservation and told me to call back a week before. Otherwise Charbon Rouge does look very promising and will try that if I can't get Paul Bert. Thanks again!

Jun 10, 2010
ccinlondon in France

Positano Review - 5 nights (Super long review...)

I do think Taverna del Leone would be a good place for a bday celebration as it was casual but still had nice white tablecloths and a warm atmosphere. They do have outside seating which is along the road - if you want to sit outside, do request this during your reservation. I don't know if there was champage on the menu as my husband always ordered the wine but you could call and ask? As an alternative, I can't recommend enough going to Hotel San Pietro beforehand for celebratory drinks and I had a gorgeous rose champagne there (they had many varieties so you won't be limited for choices). It's an unbelievably beautiful spot for great pictures to capture the celebration and just a short walk from the restaurant.

Jun 10, 2010
ccinlondon in Italy

Weekend in Paris

Thanks John! I read that same review of La Bourse which is why I picked it in the first place. I'll stick with it and report back on our meal. Will also give Le Gaigne a try this time - so many options and so little time.

Jun 09, 2010
ccinlondon in France

Capri restaurants - review (4 nights)

Hi All,

This is the second part of my post (have posted a review on the first part of our trip in Positano) regarding Capri. We spent 4 glorious nights in Capri, loving it so much that we cancelled our one night in Naples so we could squeeze in some extra time on this island. I still regret not being able to try the pizza in Naples but we'll be back for sure.

Before each dinner, we'd head to Hotel Qvisisana for cocktails which was a great place to people watch. The champagne with small wild strawberries was a favourite drink.

Here is where we ate:

Weds lunch - Il Geranio: tuna tartar, shrimp cocktail, black tagliolini served with monkfish ragout, veal escalope with mushroom sauce, and lemon cake. The pasta and veal were the highlghts. The monkfish was so delicately cooked that at first bite, I almost thought they were scallops. I can't fault the 2 seafood starters but they were just okay, no popping flavours and I definitely wouldn't recommend the lemon cake which reminded me of supermarket cake. The terrace is a beautiful spot to have lunch and the staff were very friendly, even insisting they take our picture even though I never ask waiters to do this. One weird thing is one waiter overheard us checking to see if service was included and when we confirmed that 15% had been included, he leaned over and told us that they didn't get the tip and that "it went straight to the mister". We were a bit flustered so we ended up leaving another 15% on top but somehow the exchange came across as a bit odd. €140 excl add'n tip (7/10)

Weds dinner - Da Gemma (not affiliated with Amalfi restaurant). We asked our hotel for the best pizza place in Capri and this is where he sent us. It is up the stairs leading from the piazza and a popular spot with locals and tourists. I finally had caprese salad with buffalo mozzarella (totally hit the spot), vegetable soup (not a lot of stock and a whole lot of potatoes, needed seasoning), Diavola pizza with pepperoni, Friarielli and sausage pizza (friarielli is a kind of long green vegetable that is peppery with a slight bitter tang - I was dying for any green leafy vegetable now that wasn't a grilled eggplant or zucchini), and lemon ricotta cake. Pizzas were good (not as good as Taverna del Leone in Positano) as was the dessert. €90 (7/10)

Thurs lunch - Da Gelsomina alla Migiliara. We took a taxi up to Anacapri and then walked from the bus drop-off point towards the cable car and did a lovely walk down Migliera. It's a leisurely 25-30 minute walk to the restaurant but I know you can arrange for a shuttle if you wish (we needed the exercise!). We started with the saute misto of clams & mussels, mixed salad with veggies that tasted like they were from the garden, pezzogna (type of sea bass I believe that is a deep ocean fish) with potato crust and capers "Pesce in crosta con olive", spaghetti with tomatoes and basil and a dessert I can't remember. The pezzogna was delicious and a must try while you're there, perfectly succulent meaty white fish. Pasta was honest and delicious. It was simple family setting and it felt like Grandma was in the kitchen. €105 (8.5/10)

Thurs dinner - La Grotelle. This is about a 15 minute walk from the centre of Capri and has a stunning view overlooking the Natural Arches. It might be better to go during the day to fully appreciate the view. We started off with yet another delicious caprese salad with buffalo mozzarella, and as suggested by the waiter, stuffed peppers which were delicious - filled with mixed vegetables and cheese. For the main, we had a type of grilled white fish with tomatoes and olives. It's a casual setting, the view is its major selling point, but the food is all wonderfully prepared and very fresh. €135 (8/10)

Fri lunch - La Fontelina via Faraglioni. On this day, we actually hired a boat to take us around the island for 2 hours (absolutey not to be missed) before it dropped us off at the restaurant. The restaurant is surrounded by rocks so one of their small boats will come out & collect you. We had sauted shellfish (I know again!) but this time it had razor clams which was the first time we had it in this dish, fish carpaccio (was okay, vastly pale in comparison to the dish at La Cambusa in Positano), octopus carpaccio (slightly overcooked), spaghetti with tomatoes & argula with capers (we asked for capers to be added) and finished with millefeuille of hazelnut chocolate cream & cherries. It was good but not amazing, however it was the perfect way to end the boat trip. €130 (6.5/10)

Fri dinner - Da Giorgio. We decided to come here because one of our local waiters at La Fontelina at lunch said this was his favourite restaurant in Capri. Be sure to make reservations, it was packed. I would recommend making reservations for ALL restaurants in Capri. Had the caprese salad, home made green pasta with scampi, capriciossa pizza with salami, ham & mushrooms (which were unfortunately canned), and tiramisu (not bad). It was clearly a popular spot with locals and families but we thought overall it was only average in comparison to our other meals so far. €115 (6/10)

Sat lunch - Terrazza Brunella via Tragara. After a lovely walk past the restaurant heading into the forest, we doubled back and had lunch here. We asked for the crabmeat salad but we were told this was unavailable so we asked if they would do a saute misto for us which wasn't on the menu and they were happy to oblige. I had caprese salad and it ended up being the BEST one we had on the trip, "pachero bruenlla" with searobin fish, zucchini flower, and cherry tomatoes, and my husband had the "polpetti veraci alla vesuvia" stewed baby octopus in a sun dried tomato sauce with spinach. Dessert was a chocolate cream with pear tart. My pasta was excellent, but was a bit disappointed that the zucchini flower was dissolved in the sauce, I had hoped to try it on its own. The octopus was tender but they left it as a whole baby octopus so imagine two small octopus facing each other on the plate which sort of weirded my husband out. It didn't bother me and I cut it all up for him, however I did find the sun dried tomato sauce a bit overwhelming. The tart was homemade and devoured. Another gorgeous view, attentive service and a quiet place at lunch time which we generally prefer. €110 (7.5/10)

Sat dinner - Edode. Our first choice had been Aurora but repeated attempts to get a reservation were denied so if you want to eat here for dinner, you need to make a reservation with as much advance time as possible. Our hotel recommended Edode in its place as we wanted something a bit dressier for our last night in Capri. It is indeed quite a trendy looking restaurant and near the end of our meal, a group arrived announced by flashing paparazzi pictures - turns out they were heroes of a well known Italian soccer team. I was a bit underwhelmed by my meal. True, we did splurge so our wine was €65 and our main meal, a grilled red snapper cooked Mediterranean style with white wine and potatoes, was €75 but I felt that I definitely had better food elsewhere. It was good, but didn't seem worth the value unless I suppose you factored in paying for being in a trendy spot. I'd much rather pay for extraordinary food. We started with the "Il Crudo dal Mare" which was a degustation of seabass carpaccio, tuna tartare and raw shrimp. The carpaccio was sliced razor thin and very good, tuna tartare was so so - fresh but lacked any real depth in flavour. Neither of us like raw shrimp so we asked for this to be omitted. My husband had the pasta with shrimp & cherry tomatoes and olives; the sauce had a very intense shrimp taste - I liked it, he thought it was too strong. I had the pasta with scorpion fish and cherry tomatoes - no complaints. The fish was absolutely massive, we should have told him we wanted a portion for one to share between of us but that was our fault as logically he would have assumed we wanted it for two people. Again, grilled perfectly and super fresh. We finished with a white chocolate flan, but it was more like a molten white chocolate cake with mandarin oranges. €295, Score 7/10.

And that's it! Will definitely go back to Capri, it was a true R&R vacation and a beautiful place to visit.

Jun 09, 2010
ccinlondon in Italy

Positano Review - 5 nights (Super long review...)

Hi All - After reading through all the posts and recommendations, I wanted to share my experiences after returning from our recent trip to Positano for 5 nights and Capri for 4 nights (will post a separate review on Capri).

I've included the prices where I wrote them down but note that all our meals included one bottle of local Campania wine (usualy €25-30), bottle of water, usually 2 appies, 2 mains, grappa appertif, and espresso macchiato so you might want to take that into consideration when looking at the total price. And YES - we ate TONS of food and it was all fabulous.

Sat lunch & Tues dinner - Da Vincenzo, our favourite restaurant in Positano and we liked it so much that we returned for dinner on our last night. Be sure to book in advance for dinner and if you want to sit outside, request this at time of reservation. Our favourite dishes here were the grilled & skewed octopus with whole deep fried artichoke, the local flag fish grilled with olive oil, lemon & parsley, and the chocolate almond cake (best we had was here) and even better was the tiramisu. Do NOT miss the tiramisu, I wouldn't have ordered it except the two locals behind us were practically licking their bowl and seeing their faces convinced me I should try it and I was not disappointed. To be honest, I preferred going for lunch, it was much less busy. But if you like a busy buzz and a show by live musicians that come by to play (and ask for donations), this is definitely a very popular spot. Lunch €130, Dinner €140, Score 10/10

Sat dinner - Drinks at Hotel San Pietro, Dinner at Taverna del Leone - We had originally wanted to go to Barilotto di Nonno but unfortunately it wasn't open yet for the season so the hotel recommended Taverna. I HIGHLY recommend going for drinks at San Pietro before the short walk to either Barilotto (if open when you go) or Taverna. The setting at the hotel terrace is simply stunning and the best I saw while I was there. The restaurant is a short 5 minute walk away up the road. We had the octopus salad with potatoes & olives (our fav octopus dish of the trip), thinly sliced ham with grilled veggies appie (ham was v. good), and we shared a Diavalo pizza with salami. The hotel staff told us this was the *best* pizza in Positano - I don't know if this is true but it was indeed a very tasty pizza with a nice thin crust & fluffy edges. No complaints, lovely restaurant, and a good option for a "lighter" dinner. Think the bill was < €90 including wine, Score 8.5/10

Sun lunch - Da Gemma in Amalfi. Beautiful lovely restaurant on the 2nd level overlooking the busy square traffic. We sat out on the terrace (tip: ask your hotel to make a reservation whereever you go. Even though it's not usually necessary at lunch, they reserve the best tables for you.). The highlight of this meal was the "Paccheri pasta alla Genovese" which was their house specialty pasta with slow braised beef and the "O limone" dessert which was a platter of various lemon treats: lemon crepe, super intense lemon sorbet, lemon roll cake. I also had the grilled blue fin tuna which I thought was good and my husband had the grilled sea bass but we both agreed that neither dish was good as the grilled fish at Da Vincenzo. We scored this 8/10.

Sun dinner - Il Ritrovo (Montepertuso). The hotel shuttle will pick and drop you off at your hotel. I started with the Caprese salad and quickly learned that unless the menu specifically states buffalo mozzarella, the cheese is made from cow's milk which is a much leaner version. Also good but I didn't know the difference until I read up about it (rookie!) and I personally prefer buffalo mozzarella. My husband's pasta was a hit - it was the special pasta of the day with smooked cheese, sausage and mushrooms. The sauce was tomato based with a wonderful smokiness and slight gooeyness from the cheese - absolutely delish. We shared the Florentina steak as it was the first time we'd seen it on the menu anywhere since we were in Tuscany. Meat was very good but overcooked - we had asked for it bloody and it came medium. Don't miss the ricotta cheesecake, it was divine and the only place we saw that offered it. €100, Score 7.5/10.

Mon lunch - Lo Gauroccino. This was an overall good restaurant, it has a beautiful view overlooking Il Fornillo beach and it had a nice family feel to it with its resident cat, Naomi. Again, we had octopus salad (clearly we love it), scialattielli Guarracino (home made pasta with seafood), spaghetti vongole, and the capricciosa pizza. The pasta and pizza was very good - I preferred the pizza at Taverna del Leone but this was just a step behind. We shared the lemon tiramisu for dessert which I wouldn't recommend. I would come here for a casual lunch over dinner. €85, Score 7/10

Mon dinner - Il Fornillo. A huge dinner: Saute misto (clams & mussels in garlic & parsley), spaghetti with cherry tomato and capers, gnocchi with seafood, veal escalope with lemon, deep fried zucchini flowers, side dish of spinach with lemon, and finally ricotta cheese with pear & chocolate cake. The portions were HUGE, almost too large but that may not bother you. I loved my gnocchi which were deceptively light but the dish probably could have fed 4 people. The spaghetti was amazing, the tomato sauce rich and worthy of sopping up with the bread. Do NOT miss the zucchni flowers, I didn't want to get this dish as I don't like deep fried foods but the waiter insisted it shouldn't be missed and I agree. The batter was light, fluffy and super crispy and would rival the tempura batter at any top Japanese restaurant. Also the ricotta with pear & chocolate cake was the best we had during our time there, clearly home-made with a lot of love. €100, Score 8/10 (I docked a .5 for portions!)

Tues lunch - La Cambusa. Started with the carpaccio of local fish which was one of my favourite dishes of the trip. It came sliced thinly with soya sauce and wasabi and I was in heaven. It was amazingly fresh and delicate. Half the people around me ordered the same dish once they saw it coming to my table. The waiter recommended the special of the day which was a spaghetti with local lobster (300 grams) for €60. My husband decided to try it and we actually thought this was the most disappointing pasta dish we had. The lobster was perfectly cooked but the pasta was actually not al dente, the first and only time this happened to us during our entire trip. I had the grilled local fish called "occhione" which I admit that I didn't like. It had waaaaay too many bones in it and the waiter missed a lot of scales plus I personally didn't love the flavour. We finished with the pear & ricotta cake hoping for a repeat of the previous night but it was disappointing. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend the carpaccio and feel maybe we didn't order the right dishes. €200, Score 6.5/10

Tues dinner - Drinks at Le Sireneuse (was nice but not as nice as San Pietro) and then we walked back to Da Vincenzo. Positano was gorgeous and if you have any questions, let me know. And yes, we went to the gym every day we were there otherwise we would have floated to Capri!

Jun 09, 2010
ccinlondon in Italy

Weekend in Paris

Hello, I've read through all the very informative posts on Paris restaurants but many that I'd like to try are closed on the weekends. My husband and I are returning to Paris for a weekend trip in July so only have meals on Saturday & Sunday, which excludes La Regalade (both locations!), Le Quincy, & Josephine. Have had no luck whatsoever trying to get through to Frenchie and have given up as there are so many other options. Have also tried Le Chateaubriand but they are booked out for a group on Saturday evening - we have dinner booked for Pierre Gagnaire on Sunday evening which leaves us Sat lunch and Sat dinner. Sun lunch has been reserved for an oyster lunch either at Huitrerie Regis or La Cagouille depending on where we feel like rambling around.

We had really wanted a steak frites for lunch on Sat that we haven't been to before (have been to Le Relais D'Entrecote, L'Ami Louis, Chez Georges) - unfortunately Le Severo is closed that entire weekend (July 3 & 4) for "exceptional" circumstances. I did try calling Bistro Paul Bert, despite conflicting reviews, but I was told to call back a week before the trip. I have tentatively booked La Bourse ou la Vie but after an awful review on "paris-updates.com", I'm worried. Has anyone been there recently to vouch for the food? Or have an alternative recommendation? I see some recommendations for La Rotunde but we've been there already.

As for Sat dinner, I have narrowed down to Le Gaigne or L'Ardoise Gourmande. We've been to Paris a few times before (have already been to few favs Chez L'Ami Jean, Les Papilles, Le Relais Comptoir, Le Cinq) and we're not looking for anything specific but great honest food & warm atmosphere. Price isn't an issue though we find we prefer the less stuffy establishments and my husband speaks French.

Any suggestions would be most appreciated!!

Jun 09, 2010
ccinlondon in France

Need magical 10th anniversary restaurant for Rome

Hi Sorry! I've been away and didn't see your question. I've lost track of the bills but I do believe the last place we had dinner was very reasonable and it ended up being one of our fav meals - it was at Al Bric which I found cosy and warm with great food. It was a close walk from our hotel by the Pantheon. Another inexpensive option is Da Francesca even though the service was a bit off, if you're not in a hurry this is a good place, get there early as it gets v. crowded. We went to Trattoria Monti as well which was a ways out but don't think that will fit your budget. Under no circumstances would I recommend Maccheroni which was probably the worst meal I've ever had overseas. The pasta was a gooey overcooked mess and judging from all the more than half full plates going back, I wasn't the only disappointed diner. Hope that helps!

Jun 09, 2010
ccinlondon in Italy

Need magical 10th anniversary restaurant for Rome

I'm looking forward to hearing your review of Il Paggliaccio. I just came back from Rome last weekend and had lunch at Il Paggliaccio and dinner at La Pergola. I much preferred my meal at Il Paggliaccio.

May 06, 2010
ccinlondon in Italy