Eating Milano Marittima – Ristorante La Frasca

Restaurant: Ristorante La Frasca

Location: Cervia / Milano Marittima, Italy

Date: June 9, 2011

Cuisine: Adriatic Italian

Rating: Top top traditional


A mere two nights have gone by without a truly elaborate starred restaurant dinner, so we headed to Ristorante La Frasca. Literally one block from our hotel this is a Michelin Two Star place specializing in local seafood.

The entrance, located on one of Milano Marittima’s pretty circles.

We began with a little bubbly, and then set down to ponder the…

The menu. They were a bit more flexible than our previous two star, Osteria Francescana. Not that their food wasn’t awesome, but they required strict matching of tasting menus at the table. La Frasca was anything goes so this report includes both the medium and jumbo menus.

The first round of bread includes rolls stuffed with mortadella. We are, after all, still in Emilia-Romagna.

This lovely Soave is 92 points from Parker. “The 2008 Soave Classico Calvarino is a touch more buttoned-up and vibrant than the La Rocca. Here the fruit shows gorgeous focus and drive in a taut, energetic style. This, too, possesses great overall balance, and may ultimately be the better wine to pair with food. Light floral, honeyed tones ring out on the finish. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2018.”

Amuse.  Tuna, caramelized onion, candied orange, orange sauce.

Amberjack sashimi, green apple.

Raw scallop, passionfruit, cucumber.

A fish called Baccala (Italian Salt Cod). Balsamic. Green apple sorbet. Slightly bitter.

Sole. Spinach. Truffle. Mild fish and pleasant white fish dish.

Scallop roe, Sardine,  Black truffles, and spinach mush. Looks funny, but tasted great.

Pistelli pasta (local) with fish and clams. An excellent implementation of this traditional local dish.

Tagliatelle with scampi and lemon. This was a delicious pasta, absolutely delicious. It basically tasted like candied lemon, which worked perfectly with the al dente pasta and the succulent shrimp.

This was a lovely medium bodied red selected for us by the Sommelier.

Typical of Milano Marittima the restaurant has a tree growing right through it!

Pacalri pasta tubes, with lobster and tomato sauce.

The same dish, prepared with turbot instead of lobster.

There is also a missing photo of sea urchin gnocchi with pecconino beans. Boo hoo, as this was a spectacular dish.

Then turbot and veggies in butter sauce.

It is also worth illustrating the example of finished plate art in concert with one of last years at La Terrazza.

I’m always a big fan of Aldo Conterno, ever since meeting him at his winery in June of 2000. Parker gives this 92, “The dense ruby/plum-colored 1996 Barolo Bussia Soprana exhibits a promising, classic Nebbiolo/Barolo bouquet of tobacco, cigar box, rose petals, melted tar, and copious quantities of sweet black cherry fruit. Although impressively full-bodied, powerful, tannic, and dense, it is oh, so young and backward. Patience … please! Anticipated maturity: 2010-2025.”

Black cod.  Pumpkin sauce. Corget flower.

Quail breasts stuffed with fois gras, with the legs tempura fried. This was rich but delicious. Like a poultry Beef Wellington.

A pre dessert of zabaione and cherries. Wonderful.

Stracciatella merange. Chocolate and Vannilla creme.

Chocolate candied fruits grame cracker and passion fruit ice cream. Delicious!

La Frasca’s wine room.

Various petite fors. Creme puffs, little fruit and creme tarts, chocolate truffles, etc.

This was a wonderful meal, more traditional than Osteria Francescana, but perfectly on point.

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Eating Modena – Osteria del Pozzo

Restaurant: Osteria del Pozzo

Location: Modena, Italy

Date: June 5, 2011

Cuisine: Emilia Romagna

Rating: Very good casual


This post kicks off the food portion of my 2011 Europe trip, Eating Italy. We begin our month of gastronomic excess in the heart of Emilia Romagna, Modena — home of both Ferrari and Balsamico di Modena. It’s oddly rainy for June, and exhausted from over 27 hours of air and ground travel we stumbled across the street to this local place.

The have a number of rooms in these cute little tents.

The menu.

A prosecco, slightly sweet.

Caprese of course. Each portion is a whole ball of real buffalo mozzerella! Huge.

Homemade pasta, ham, arugala, cream, parmesan. This was a VERY good pasta by my taste, the in heavy ham & cream style I love (see here or here).

Spagetti and pomodoro.

Bresola, thin sheets of cured beef and parmesan and arugala. Good stuff.

Insalata mixta.

This 15E sangiovese was very drinkable.

Homemade (all the pasta except the spagetti was) with zucchini and shrimp. A nice light pasta.

Potato gnocchi in gorgonzola sauce. These were the kind of amazing gnocchi that are nearly impossible to find in the states, where they are so fluffy they melt in the mouth.

Tortellini in broth. A very traditional dish, little meat pockets in a savory chicken broth.

Classic taggliatelli ragu.Probably mixed pork and beef.

The case of traditional northern Italian desserts. Various cakes and tortes.

The chocolate with hazelnut nougat cake. Very rich.

Cherry torte. It tasted like strawberry rhubarb pie.

A sampler of fresh fruits. The cantaloupe was particularly flavorful and sweet. The cherries were great too.

This place was a perfect choice for the right off the plane choice. It was casual, reasonable, but had very good food. Perfecto.

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