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Coffee in Italy

Many bars also serve caffè d'orzo (or just "orzo"), a non-caffeinated beverage made from roasted barley.

Jun 30, 2014
ghiottone in Italy

FREAKIN' UNBELIEVABLE BURGERS & FRIES. (DTW/Flint)

Pinkishfloyd is spot on: this is one great burger. The quality of the ingredients is first class (on mine, anyway). I used the "build your burger modus": (1) select protein (beef for me - 2 3-oz patties is the default - but they also have salmon, portobello, etc); (2) select free toppings (I went with carmelized onions); (3) select a sauce (I went with the 1000-islandish Freakin Sauce, but they have a variety of spiced mayos, even eel sauce; (4) select a cheese for add-on price (lots of options); (5) select extras for add-on price (I went with bacon, and it was 4 or 5 relatively thick slice of real bacon). One-size bevs (simplicity) + fries for an extra $2.29. Total came to just over $10. Burger is made to order, so you get a number and they bring it to your table. Place was full, but it took only about 5 minutes to get served. So, slow-ish fast food. But as Pinkish notes, it's a really great burger. Easy to get to from I-75 - exit at Corunna, then a drive of less than 5 minutes. I'm mosdef stopping in again on my way back down from Alpena. Looks like they want to franchise - I think it would be a hit.

Nov 11, 2013
ghiottone in Great Lakes
1

Gozo (Malta) recommendations?

Ta'Frenc is really excellent, though pricey. I liked how when you arrive, you're seated in the bar area first, offered to order a cocktail (nice classic Champagne-based cocktails for, I believe, EUR 10), and then given the dinner menu to study while having your drink. They even took our order before escorting us to our table. They were kind enough to allow us to split the aljotta - very nice rendition. Having had fish for lunch (see below), we went with duck breast (a special not shown on their online menu) and the rabbit - both prepared excellently. Extensive wine list runs the gamut in price, but I found an affordable, enjoyable Burgundy. Total bill came to about EUR 135. Will be certain to return.

Had lunch at Ta'Cenc (http://www.tacenc.com/content.aspx?id...), which is run by the eponymous hotel though located nowhere near it. It's on the southern side of the island (south of Sannat and tricky to find) and right smack on the cliffs, with a stunning view of the sea and Comino (photo below). Had ceviche of various local fishes, terrific grilled prawns, grilled tuna (cooked perfectly: nearly raw in the middle), grilled swordfish and lots of Cisk beer (I couldn't seem to drink my fill of this, really refreshing). Bill was EUR 65.

Ate one dinner at Café Jubilee (http://www.cafejubilee.com.mt/) in Victoria (appears to be a mini-chain) that was pretty mediocre. Prices are reasonable and portions are large.

There's a nice restaurant called Horizon, located right on the water next to the cove where the Salt Pans start. Just had beer (more Cisk), but the menu features a lot of fresh fish. Reasonable prices, too.

A little lunch place called Stephen's in Xaghra (just off the main square) sells tasty, freshly prepared pastizzi, fitira, arancini and the like at rock-bottom prices.

Thought of eating in Xlendi (beautiful setting), but all the restaurants seemed pretty pedestrian, pricey, and sorta facsimiles of one another. YMMV.

Nov 02, 2013
ghiottone in Europe

good food in Malta?

Another vote for Legligin. Also had the tasting menu: (mostly) cold (mostly) vegetarian starter courses were very good. The warm "main" courses seem to keep coming until you tell the owner to stop. They also offer just the starter portion of the menu for EUR 12.50, IIRC.

Nov 02, 2013
ghiottone in Europe

Lunch between Bologna and Rimini

This is good info, as I fly out of BLQ not infrequently. I look forward to checking it out.

Sep 18, 2013
ghiottone in Italy

Lunch in Ravenna

Another thumb's up for Trattoria al Gallo. Still as good as these four-year-old posts indicate. Two starters: artichoke hearts topped with shrimp, and a rucola salad with grana, capers, and thinly shaved, giant mushrooms (rather mild, much like champignons). Two mains: cuttlefish "a moda di Gallo" - basically batons of cuttlefish in a spicy broth with large chunks of tomato and carrot - and paillard-style swordfish filets. Dessert was a semifreddo amaretti (affogato al caffè). Everything was quite good. Prices are a bit on the high side, but price-quality seemed right. Wine, on the other hand, was very reasonable by the glass at EUR 4: a prosecco valdobbiadene and a rebola. Nice pours, too.

Beautiful rooms(s): Art Deco to the max, which you don't find often in Italy, with wonderful furniture and mantelpieces (a main theme seems to be women with animals (dogs, stags, etc.)). Lots of wood and stained glass. Lovely garden. Very pleasant service. The restaurant also provides tourists with gift of a detailed guide on the history of the town, particularly about the mosaics (in Italian, of course).

http://www.algallo1909.it/

Sep 16, 2013
ghiottone in Italy

Any suggestions for dining/food shopping in Le Marche, especially Camerino/Tolentino area?

A friend recommends Etoile (http://www.pizzeriaetoile.it/default.asp) - "si mangia bene, si spende poco". The menu looks a bit meh, but the price point does appear to be in the affordable range.

Bear in mind that Camerino is a university town, and menus tend to skew toward student tastes and budgets.

Sep 14, 2013
ghiottone in Italy

Any suggestions for dining/food shopping in Le Marche, especially Camerino/Tolentino area?

Um, more like a two-hour drive. And that's being generous for a non-native driver. I live in between the two locations and have driven these routes often enough. Truly within an hour's drive of Camerino are the coastal towns around Civitanova, Amandola in the Sibillini Mountains (a gorgeous drive from Camerino), or even Spoleto in Umbria, and there is good eating to be had at all of them.

Sep 14, 2013
ghiottone in Italy

Any suggestions for dining/food shopping in Le Marche, especially Camerino/Tolentino area?

I can recommend two great pizza joints in Camerino: La Saporita and Il Re. They both mainly offer by the slice, which allows you to try a variety. Wait to get them as they come out of the oven.

I’ve not had the occasion to eat very often along the highway to the coast, but if you venture as far as Macerata (home to the famous open-air opera theater, the Sferisterio), you might try Osteria dei Fiori (http://www.osteriadeifiori.it/restaur...).

Sep 13, 2013
ghiottone in Italy

Doings at Amerigo in Savigno

In this morning's email:

On Tuesday, the 13th of August
CRESCENTINE &…
ancestral, familiar, on the yeast, natural red sparkling wines…
We have almost got to the XV edition
and we could well define this event a great classic of the Summer.
Gnocco...crescentine...tigelle and red sparkling wines will be the protagonists of our evening, together with our cooked
pesto montanaro, the famous cold cuts from Mora Romagnola free range pigs, Slow Food Praesidium mortadella,
our local cheeses, the vegetable and fruit preserves from our own Dispensa and other surprises.
We will blindly taste five different, new “old style” red sparkling wines, we will find out distinctive features, grape blends, production areas and the winner will be decreed only at the end of the evening. We are just aiming at offering a stimulus
to enhance our curiosity, entertainment and to develop a pleasant dialogue, in a very relaxing environment and atmosphere.
The price of the evening per person is 45 Euros. We are not going to start having dinner together, as it would happen for all other evenings. Since the menu is a very "informal"one, you will be free to have your dinner from 20 to 21:30 p.m, at your pleasure. We won't skimp on wines, we will be generous… 60 bottles for 50 guests.
For reservations or further information: 051 6708326 – info@amerigo1934.it

Aug 09, 2013
ghiottone in Italy

Lunch in Umbria

Taverna del Pescatore's website has been down for some time, leading me to think it may be closed. I haven't bothered to check, though, when passing by on the highway to Spoleto.

Jul 24, 2013
ghiottone in Italy

Recommendations for Venice, Vicenza, Ferrara and Bologna

Re Ferrara: This was added a mere five days ago. http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/904606
It contains a wealth of information, as do many other recent posts on Venice and Bologna.

Jun 11, 2013
ghiottone in Italy

Salumi smuggling days are over (for some regions anyway)

May 19, 2013
ghiottone in Italy

Staying in Via Veneto

Piccolo Abruzzo isn't far from the top of the Via Veneto. http://www.piccoloabruzzo.it/eng/inde...

May 12, 2013
ghiottone in Italy

Amerigo dal 1934: Spring picnic

This arrived in my email today (English translation provided by the restaurant):

PICNIC IN THE GULLIES
We have waited and waited and finally the spring has come! Now we can start our Scampagnate, the walks dedicated to the discovery of the surrounded landscape.

To inaugurate the new season, Saturday May 11, we have chosen a simple path winding through the Gullies and a fresh vegetable menu. Asparagus, artichokes and spring mushrooms will be the season protagonist.

We’ll spend a day together, in contact with nature, telling stories among amazing panoramic views and tasting Amerigo’s style snacks and picnics.

We will meet at 9.45, at Trattoria, ready to leave at 10:00.

Rates: 55 € per person.
Free for kids up to 5 years.
50% reduction for kids from 6 up to 12 years.
Special rates if you wish to stay at our Inn.

For further information and reservations please contact:
info@amerigo1934.it
Marina 333 3075219
Alberto 335 5289756

May 02, 2013
ghiottone in Italy

Urbino

Anybody got anything? I couldn't turn up much on a search. An acquaintance is going to be spending a few days there, and although I live in Marche, I rarely eat in Urbino.

Apr 20, 2013
ghiottone in Italy

Help Finding Restaurants/Trattoria Around Ascoli

Spoleto: Osteria del Matto (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Osteri...).

Mar 23, 2013
ghiottone in Italy

Two days in Emilia-Romagna

I can heartily recommend Amerigo (in Savigno). Alberto's philosophy is very locally focused. The restaurant is simple, but the food is outstanding.

Feb 21, 2013
ghiottone in Italy

Cerveteri

For anyone venturing up from Rome to Cerveteri to visit the Etruscan necropolis (well worth a trip, just 45 minutes from Rome center: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cerveter...), I can recommend lunch at Le Ginestre (http://www.anticalocandaleginestre.com/), located next to the town’s Etruscan Museum. In addition to the a la carte offerings (pastas in the low teens, mains in the low 20s), they have two fixed price menus: a three-course menu that changes daily (€ 30, includes glass of wine, water, dessert, coffee), and a two-course lunch-only “Roman specialties” menu (€ 23, choice of carbonara/cacio pepe, saltimbocca/involtini (IIRC), plus wine, coffee, sorbetto). We opted for the latter. The pastas were quite good, though the cacio pepe was not hot enough. I was told that they can’t toss it in the pan as the cheese sticks. I found that odd. I assume that the sauce is “cooked” by the hot pasta, then. But there was too much sauce for the pasta to heat thoroughly. Perhaps that’s a typical style, though I doubt it. The secondi were piatti unici, meaning they were served with vegetables. The saltimbocca consisted of two generous veal cutlets and was well prepared. We’d swapped out the veal involtini for a shredded pork dish, also quite good. Nice selection of breads. Charming space.

Oct 18, 2012
ghiottone in Italy

Marche - Macerata/Civitanova or Ancona/Falconara/Jesi

For more info, you might want to come to our next American expat gtg in early September. There aren't many of us, but one is ex-Numana and has lots of tips. If you're interested, send me an email through http://www.swrl-lab.com/

Aug 29, 2012
ghiottone in Italy

Marche - Macerata/Civitanova or Ancona/Falconara/Jesi

Good to know about Emilio. Hope you enjoyed Fiori.

Jul 18, 2012
ghiottone in Italy

One lunch in Senigallia

Agreed re Uliassi, provided you are looking for a Michelin *-ed fish restaurant. Also am unfamiliar with Pongetti.

Jul 03, 2012
ghiottone in Italy

Doings at Amerigo in Savigno

Received this in my email this morning from Amerigo dal 1934, an excellent restaurant outside of Bologna, in Savigno (http://www.amerigo1934.it/index.php/c...

)

AMERIGO’S WALK
le SCAMPAGNATE di AMERIGO
taking a stroll, having a picnic and great fun

A calendar of events, from April to October,
where people, tales, nature and gastronomy interweave.

We will discover together our Appennine Mountains, having a walk among chestnuts, orchards and badlands, tower houses, springs, rural churches and memory places.
Our unusual trips are a real source of inspiration if you go on them with other people, walking in contact with nature until usually otherwise unreachable reachable places, while picking up every suggestion without distractions.
Our cooking traditions, based on product seasonality and on what we get from our garden, fields and woods, will be our central thread. We enjoy the idea of thinking about linen tablecloths on grass, smiles, music, simple and natural products for a typical Amerigo style picnic.
Don’t worry, we will arrange the food. You may just want to come properly equipped with comfortable shoes, camera, notebook, binoculars...or what you prefer. If you lose sight of the end man, make sure at least you don’t lose the map we will give you! We are clearly joking, our tracks won’t be hard, the rhythm won’t be pressing and half of time we are going to spend together will be dedicated to motor activities for your jaws and mind.
Our first date

Saturday, the 28th of April 2012
Farmers, tower houses, strange springs and famous cellars along the river bed.
Departure: Savigno 260MSL, 10,00 A.M. Track end: Fagnano 175MSL
Journey back to Savigno by “Corriera” (bus) at 15,15
Track length: 8,5km - Difficulty: easy – Rises and drops-150 +65
Territory: Path, headland, stream shore, grass, orchard
Total 5h15min: 2h45min walk and 2h30min relaxation and stops
Foods: Surprise snacks and refreshments along the path; wines and cellars; spring mushrooms and much more!!
55 Euro per person all inclusive. Children and teenagers up to 12 years: 50% reduction. If you wish to spend a night at our inn, ask for special prices reserved to our guests during the “Scampagnate” weekends.
For further information and bookings: info@amerigo1934.it; Marina 3333075219; Alberto 3355289756

Coming soon

Saturday, the 26th of May
Virtuous circuit among artisans and artists in Samoggia amphitheatre, along Costa path, around the “Pieve”, at the Sanctuary and at Castle ruins.
Follow the links of our next events for further information about details, time and price or write or phone us, if you prefer; we will be glad to give you all information you may need.


Other dates coming soon !

.

Apr 15, 2012
ghiottone in Italy

Tips for Le Marche?

Please let your friends know that a friend of ours has organised an expat lunch at a local trattoria for this Sunday, April 15. There'll be at least four of us Americans there, plus assorted Italians. Have them contact me at http://www.swrl-lab.com for info, if they're interested.

Hope this doesn't get deleted....

Apr 10, 2012
ghiottone in Italy

Tips for Le Marche?

I live next door, in Sassoferrato, about 20 minutes from Pergola. I find that Pergola itself doesn’t have all that much to recommend itself. Neither does Sasso, really. But should you venture this way (south-ish of Pergola), La Rocca (http://www.ristorantelarocca.biz/) (at the castello, or top part of the town) has a pretty good chef doing somewhat more modern takes on classics. Also in that piazza is Bartolo (named after the town’s favorite son, the father of international law). The food is good, but basic – as is the case in much of central Marche.

Since you’re in the area, be sure to check out the Frasassi caves – one of the biggest cave systems in Europe. High above the caves, in the little village of Pierosara, you’ll find Da Maria (http://www.ristorantemaria.com), where the cooking is excellent.

Continue on through the caves (comune of Genga), onto the superstrada for a short hop, and get off at Serra San Quirico. On the road leading up the hill, out of town, is Da Raul, my hands-down favorite in all of central Marche. Raul is a forager, and you’ll find seasonal contorni on his menu. Much of the rest of the menu doesn’t change, but everything is superb.

Going west Pergola, be sure to check out the lovely town of Cagli. Home to the salumi festival Distinti Salumi (looks like you’ll just miss it – early May every (now) two years), it has a number of very good restaurants. I like La Giocanda (http://www.ristorantelagioconda.it) (Mona Lisa to non-Italians). Last time I was there they were offering pata negra, a rarity in these parts.

East of Cagli, is Aqualagna, major truffle country. While in the area, check out Furlo. While it does claim a rather stuffy and inefficient Michelin * restaurant, grab a panino from the bar next door, housed in an inn where Mussolini used to spend his summers and cook tagliatelle for his entourage. Check out the dining room next door, which is like a museum, kept in 1930s style with Fascist slogans on the walls. Then, be sure to drive through the old Roman Furlo Pass. Mussolini’s profile was carved into the rocks above and has a bit of history (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Furlo_Pass).

West of Cagli there’s also Martinelli in Apecchio (http://www.2spaghi.it/ristoranti/marc...). I haven’t been, but a friend just ate there under a lunch organised by the informal Senigallia group Amici del maiale (Friends of the Pig) and said it was great (polenta with venison ragù, tripe, lamb liver).

If you head east from Pergola, the next town you’ll hit is San Lorenzo in Campo. Check out the “Farroteca” Monterosso (http://www.farrotecamonterosso.it/hom...) for great farro products. They have a restaurant, but IIRC it may be only for private parties.

For wine, head south from San Lorenzo (direction Jesi). You’ll enter prime Verdicchio (white) and Lacrima di Morro d’Alba (red) territory. One cantina worth a stop is Moncaro (http://www.moncaro.com/tenuta_A.cfm?l...), whose wines have won a number of awards. If you’re up for it, continue on to Jesi and hit the Regional Enoteca of Marche, which seeks to feature all Marche vintners. The website says 400 labels, but I think there are more (http://www.comune.jesi.an.it/opencms/...). Note that the enoteca opens at 5 PM.

Feel free to post if you have any questions, but since you’re staying with locals, I’m sure you’ll have plenty of recommendations.

Apr 10, 2012
ghiottone in Italy

Restaurant in/near Siena for wedding reception

It's been awhile, but I stayed at Villa dei Lecci, just outside the Sienna walls. It would be a lovely spot for a wedding. The Albuzza sisters are wonderful hosts and cooks. There seem to be some problems with the various iterations of their website (a redirect a .com and a strange message at .it), so best to check first. However, TripAdivsor reports recent stays, the first poster mentioning that she had her wedding there: http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Revi...

Mar 20, 2012
ghiottone in Italy

Italy road trip

Senigallia has two high-end restaurants, and both are excellent: Madonnina del Pescatore (http://www.morenocedroni.it/madonnina...) and Ulliasi (http://www.uliassi.it/eng/index_eng.html). Expect to spend upwards of €80 pp, though.

There are also more affordable restaurants. As I noted in a post awhile back, there are a number of good restaurants along the southern Lungomare (i.e. bearing right at the rotunda). Fish is obviously the standard fare. The best is Luna Rossa, on the water side of the road. Across the road and down a bit (IIRC) is La Griglia, a more traditional-looking trattoria but also with good food. In the same area but away from the water is Le Mirage, one of the best places for reasonably priced fish. Bear im mind that, although Senigallia is right on the Adriatic, fish can tend to be pricey, meaning that "reasonable" is a relative term.

If you have a car, I can also suggest you head up the road to Marotta, maybe a 15-minute drive. Try Ristorante Boy, near the central access to the beach and with nice view of the Adriatic, or my current fav, El Garagol (http://www.elgaragol.it/), where you should be sure to try the garagoi alla marottese, local dialect and local preparation for local sea snails.

Mar 02, 2012
ghiottone in Italy

Praiano - Market

I shopped at Tutto per Tutti. Very nice selection of regional cheeses and salumi. Good produce. Large assortment of canned and dry goods. A bit tricky to find (on the corner of a sharp curve descending down into the town), so be sure to map it first.
http://www.marinotuttopertutti.it/eng...

Feb 22, 2012
ghiottone in Italy

Bruni does Berlin

Glowing reports on Tim Raue, Horvath, Noto, and Hartmanns.

http://travel.nytimes.com/2012/01/29/...

Jan 27, 2012
ghiottone in Europe

Berlin: German comfort food

Had a great time in your fair city. Very pleasant going everywhere by bicycle, which enabled us to stumble onto a few unreported places.

Biking down from Alexanderplatz, we passed by Zur Rippe (www.zur-rippe.de) and decided to stop in for a late lunch. Very, very traditional fare and decor. Sadly, we ate lightly in advance of Henne, but everything was excellent. I had the Berliner Knacker and the schmalz. GF had the Grünkohlsuppe. Excellent beer on tap. Service top-notch. But man was I jonesin’ for just about everything on the menu – from the schnitzel to any of the four preparations with in-season chanterelles. Prices very reasonable.

Henne is everything I remembered it to be, less the nearby Wall. Not a bad wait for the birds, maybe 45 minutes, but had the potato salad and the Krautsalat to tide us over. Chicken was just perfect. Interesting to watch the techniques employed by neighboring diners as they went about attacking their chickens. And the Landbier – absolutely right with that call, Linguafood.

On Friday, we were passing through the Wiener Str. and spotted Mercan ... from our bikes. Decided to grab lunch there, reported on the Best Turkish Restaurant thread..

Dinner was Sol y Sombra (www.solysombra-berlin.de), which we passed by on Oranienplatz the night before on the way home from Henne ... on our bikes. OK, not mind-blowing but nonetheless pretty darn good for people like us who can only dream of eating Spanish food. Had mixed tapas for 3, and the assortment was plentiful and tasty, esp. the boquerones. The only thing I was missing were the bacalao fritters. Extra order of Serrano ham and manchego. A pitcher of sangria and a nice bottle of Corazón Loco. Don’t remember the bill total, but it was very reasonable.

Saturday, we found ourselves around the Brandenburg Gate about lunchtime, and it being GF’s “round” birthday, I opted for Margaux. I’d been there several times and was never overly impressed, but the chance of sitting in the garden seemed appealing. We had a pleasant time, but the food was, for me, simply OK and waaaay pricey, even for lunch. Pedalling afterward across the Gendarmenmarkt, I did have a “DOH!” moment.

I chose Jolesch for the round birthday dinner, and it didn’t disappoint. Thanks again, Linguafood. It was just what I was looking for – comfortable atmosphere and elevated traditional cooking. For instance, GF had a champagne-mustard soup with a nice-sized scallop in the middle. I had the “ganzer Kopfsalat”, which was fine but a bit bland. Tirolean all the way for the mains: GF had the Dinkel-Knödel, really tasty and with a modern plating. I went with the schnitzel, and it was really well prepared. One thing I noticed here and elsewhere was dining times. We showed up for our 9 PM reservation, and the place was jammed, with most tables in the process of getting their mains. We were seated promptly, but service was a bit hinky since the staff was a bit in the weeds, though it picked up very nicely once things calmed down. I think only two tables were seated after us. It just struck me as odd that Berliners young and old would sit down for dinner on a Saturday night at 7:30.

We set out early Sunday morning for Dessau to see the Bauhaus school, stopping on the way back in rainy Potsdam for lunch. I can recommend that brew-Gaststätte (the “Meierei) at Cecilienhof, site of the Potsdam Conference. Tasty trad Prussian fare (schmalz for me again). The pils they brew is nice, albeit a tad bland for me, but I’m not a fan of the seasonal cherry ale they were serving, though the touries were buying plenty of those big, fancy 5-L bottles of it.

Dinner was at Musashi. Like the tapas place, it was quite acceptable but not mind-blowing. And again, jammed at 8:00 when we showed up, empty at 8:45 when our food was ready. An after-dinner stroll along the canal took us by Horvath, and that’s definitely on the list for my next visit. As is some serious drinking at Ankerklause (corner Maybachufer and Kottbusser Damm), which reminded me of many of my favorite Kneipen in Hamburg. I was roundly chastised by a HH/Berlin friend for skipping it.

Also gorged myself on Brötchen. Though really a bodega, the Lecker Bachstube in the Fidicinstrasse has very tasty rolls and pastries.

What with EasyJet having low-price Rome-Berlin service, I’m sure I’ll be returning soon.

Sep 29, 2011
ghiottone in Europe