Recent recommendations for Lake Como and Verona
We will be traveling to the Lake Como (staying in Tremezzo) and Verona areas in early June and I'm looking for restaurant recommendations that are a little more recent than some I've been reading. Can anyone help?
I just got married in Varenna on Lake Como (small wedding with 10 people). We had excellent food in Lake Como...in particular: our wedding lunch at Hotel Villa Cipressi. We ordered right off the menu and no one was disappointed. Fresh gnocchi, tagliatelle, meats and fish -- it was all delicious. We had our rehearsal dinner at Vecchia Varenna the night before, and I think the food at Villa Cipressi was much better and the locale is fantastic.
We had our wedding dinner at Hotel du Lac in Bellagio. It was an incredibly reasonable 40 EUROs a person and absolutely fantastic. We had a smoked salmon salad, followed by risotto with crab and beets (I found it a little salty, but the others liked it). The star for me was the homemade pasta with breasola, arugula, olive oil and cherry tomatoes -- it was really some of the best pasta we had in the country. Then we had guinea fowl with grilled artichokes -- also excellent. We finished the night with millefeuile wedding cake -- a layered wedding cake with thin layers of cream and pastry...truly to die for.
We also ate at Silvio in Bellagio which is well known for their fish. I had the fish simply cooked with olive oil, which was excellent. But my husband had a fried fish that wasn't good, followed by panna cotta that was incredibly chalky. But...the big star restaurant in Bellagio is supposedly Salice Blu. We didn't get a chance to go there, but I've heard fantastic things from people who live there.
In any case, please report back!
If you are into the Italian Slow Food Guide (you should be if you are on this board and on this website), and you like amarone, the Valpolicella region is not to be missed. Not to mention, it's beautiful and not very crowded (as compared with say...Verona). It is the mecca of Amarone. Eveyone in the region is SO proud of amarone and wants to tell you the story about how important it is. It is cool to see the passion about the local food and wine. I know, they do that everywhere in Italy, but these guys are the underdogs to Tuscany, so the passion has to come out even harder. It does.
It's really only about a 20 minute drive from Verona and well worth it. We stayed in the region in a very small town called Fumane. Fumane is not a typical tourist destination, so if you go to a lot of the small small towns in the region, dont be surprised to see people staring going, "what are you doing here!". Be forewarned, you wont find any tourist buses lined first thing in the AM here. Personally, those are the places we prefer to go. I think Fumane has one gelateria with the same old man and same broken bicycle in front it it, day in and day out.
Anyway, I cant wait to go back someday. In Fumane, Enoteca della Valpolicella. I think my favorite meal EVER!
I just couldn't imagine being in Verona and not visiting Valpolicella for at least one obscure/off the beaten path Slow Food Guide meal accompanied by an excellent amarone.
PS. Beautiful Lake Garda is a short drive from Fumane and also offers a few Slow Food Guide choices. The drive north up the lake from Valpolicella is breathtaking.