Restaurant: Trattoria Pepei
Location: Siena, Italy
Date: June 12 & 19, 2011
Rating: Delicious & Fun!
Our first full day in tuscany and we went into Siena. We selected a restaurant the night before using Michelin, picking a centrally located one that earned a bib gourmet.
Trattoria Papei which is located in the piazza Mercato right behind the Campos.
They have an extensive terrace area under a network of awnings and umbrellas.
We ordered this local, inexpensive, and very pleasant chianti classico reserva. Parker gives it 90 points. “The 2007 Chianti Classico Riserva Il Grigio (Sangiovese) comes across as soft and pliant, very much in the style of the vintage. A warm, open bouquet leads to succulent ripe cherries, flowers and spices, all of which flow through nicely to the enveloping finish. Today the juiciness of the fruit makes Il Grigio very attractive, but readers who prefer more tertiary complexity will want to wait for a few years. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2017. “
A typical (you’ll here this word a lot here) Tuscan anti-pasta: mixed bruschetta. Here are tomato and marinated mushrooms, both delicious.
Melon with Prosciutto di Toscana.
More cured meats and bruschetta. The brown mud like stuff is chicken liver. The round salami is Finnochiona, a typical (again) local salami with a bit of fennel and pepper inside.
A truly excellent Zuppe Minestrone. The vegetables maintained their shape, but were cooked wuch that they melt in the mouth.
Tuscan bread and vegetable (mostly tomato) soup.
The kitchen is run my mama, literally.
Pappardelle al Ragu Di Cinghiale! Wild boar strikes again.
Tagliatelle with ragu Toscana (mixed meat ragu probably).
Tagliatelle with duck ragu. This was deep and meaty. There must have been some duck liver in the sauce too.
Cheese ravioli with marinated mushroom sauce.
Pici (homemade local pasta) with cheese and pepper. This is a very simple dish, but when done right, as it was here, it’s amazing! The bright black papper flavor stands out. They have this now at Sotto, a new rustic Italian in LA.
Gnocchi pomodoro. The gnocchi here were soft and delicious, although not quite as good as the ones the first night in Modena.
Gnocchi with butter and sage.
Mixed salad (again).
Another salad, arugala or rocket with tomatos.
Pounded veal in lemon sauce. I’m not a big veal fan but this was good.
BBQ Ribs, Tuscan style. These were not unlike spare ribs at a chinese restaurant. They were a bit chewier than I was used too as the flavorful Tuscan pigs are leaner and free range, and the Italians don’t nuke the meat.
Delicious potatoes in a tomato sauce.
Pounded veal in a mushroom sauce — also excellent.
And at the end some free grappa. Ouch! taste-buds still stinging.
This is a fun and delicious place. It’s located in the lovely square above. They may cater to tourists, but they serve amazing traditional Tuscan food prepared with very fresh ingredients. And the service is extremely friendly.
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