A barking dog greets us as we approach the door. The ristorante overlooks the valley, but at 8:30pm it’s too dark to appreciate the view anymore. We are seated (after successfully confirming our reservations online in Italian (woo hoo!)) at the table with our place card which reads:
Well… I guess that sets the staff’s expectations of us fairly low. Nowhere to go but up, now!
We order antipasti and main courses. An amuse is sent out from the kitchen: breaded and fried zucchini blossoms stuffed with veal and herbs. Lovely. We order a bottle recommended by Nicola (a Barbera d’Alba) and it’s great (of course).
Nancy’s quail with its uovi looks and tastes great and my tartare of veal is wonderfully light and clean tasting. Both dishes are topped with shaved truffles. Neither dish stands a chance. When our next course arrives, my veal filet comes wrapped up as a gift in cellophane and ribbon. Nancy’s taglietelli with white truffles shows up as just pasta with a little butter, but having observed it several times in the restaurant already, we know what’s coming. The head waiter comes over with the white truffle and starts shaving. With every slice, I can hear the cash register bell ringing *ka-ching! ka-ching!* After about 45 slices, the dish is probably worth the €35 we paid for it. Both dishes are delicious.
With that course conquered, the desserts are offered and, despite achieving satiety, Nancy orders the pannecotta and the semifreddo. I get the tortello di nocciolo (hazelnut torte). Nancy eats half of hers, and I all of mine. An espresso and cappuccino finish off the meal.