verona - love food
i'm going to verona for two nights and i want to have the best meals i can. can anyone recommend some places? i've heard good things about Bottega dei Vini.
We had a wonderful meal there some time ago, but you'll want more recent recs. This restaurant has a special place in my heart since it's where I was introduced to Amarone and bigoli with duck ragu.
The Amarone we drank was bottled specially for the restaurant. The wine steward indulged in theatrics the likes of which I've never seen before or since. If I remember correctly, he poured a small amount of wine into a wine glass. Then, he swirled the wine glass -- ostentatiously vigorously -- and poured the liquid into a second wine glass. He reapeated the swirling and poured the wine into a third wine glass. When all the swirling and pouring was completed, he took a taste of the wine. Satisfied, he decanted the bottle of wine multiple times and, finally, poured some in our glasses. Both the performance and the wine were amazing!
Bigoli is a thick regional pasta. It's quite hearty so it should be paired with an equally hearty sauce like duck ragu. The results were amazing; to use the rating system of Michelin, this dish was worth a detour.
The restaurant has two rooms and a split personality. The front room was hectic, antiseptically brightly lit with a cold deli case displaying salumi visible to all tables. The back room is darker and more atmospheric. We dined in the back room before the ban on smoking. This was not a touristy restaurant; most of the patrons were Italian. Nevertheless, no one was smoking for most of the evening. When one diner lit up, the small enclosed back room rapidly filled with smoke ruining our sense of smell and the taste of our food. Fortunately, we were near the end of our meal and beat a hasty retreat.
We had two dinners in Verona a couple of years ago. Both rank right up there with the best I have had in Italy: Taverna di Stella and Al Pompieri. Make sure to reserve ahead for both.
Before we even discuss food-where are you going to stay? One of Verona's two best hotels is the Gabbio d'Or which is right in the middle of the Old Town. If you can stay there it is, indeed, worth a lot. Literally across the street is a kind of grocery that has exemplery pastry and bread, among the best in all of Verona. You will be within two or three blocks of several of Verona's best restaurants including the two Michelin starred Il Desco.
Just sit al fresco in the Piazza delle Erbe.
Get a vermouth, a fernet, whatever.
Do nothing. Stay forever, let time pass by. Enjoy.