My first sit down coffee

For the first time since 10th March I was able to sit down at Bar Italia to enjoy a coffee and sfoglia with a friend for breakfast.

It was dull day at Ponte a Serraglio, but that was no problem at all.

I forgot to photograph my sfoglia, but the rest is here. I can report that the bar is well organised with health concerns taken care of. We sat outside and there was lots of space between tables.

 

 

 



The geraniums are enjoying the rain and are growing. It is great to be able to visit Ponte a Serraglio!

The opening begins. Let’s hope it continues!

 

I Macelli

I Macelli is a delightful restaurant in nearby Borgo a Mozzano. It is a bright yellow building behind the town. We visited on an autumn evening.

The decor is traditional. We were early, the first people there, but it soon filled up and by the time we left all tables were full.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The menu is typical of the area. All of our chosen dishes were well presented and delicious.

Antipasti…

A selection of salami and local choices.

Buffalo mozzarella with anchovies.

Secondi…

Bacala with polenta.

Tagliata di cinta sinese with cannellini and borlotti beans.

Grilled veal chop.

Tagliata di manzo with Gorgonzola and radicchio.

We were much too full together try one of the delicious desserts…next time.

I Macelli…Piazza I Macelli, Borgo a Mozzano.

Phone…0583 88700

 

Aperitivo at Eat Valley

We discovered a great new place to enjoy aperitivo not far from Bagni di Lucca, in Ghivizzano.

Eat Valley offers an excellent selection of wine and aperitivo delights. Everything was delicious. We decided to eat outside on a warm evening.

There are excellent tasting rooms inside. 

There is also a well stocked shop selling a range of local products.

The restaurant specialises in grilled meats.

Thank you Vera and Ronaldo for a delightful evening.

Eat Valley

 Viale Nazionale 193

(39) 370 3478099

Ristorante Piazzangelio

One of our favourite restaurants in the area was Cappuccetto Rosso. We were not happy when they told us they were closing. They assured us they would reopen in a new location.

The new restaurant has opened in the historical centre of Barga. It is called Ristorante Piazzangelio, named after the Piazza where it is located.

The interior is elegant and inviting. (Valentina’s photo)

Lovely Valentina looked after us just as well as she did at the previous restaurant.

The food is excellent. We ordered shared plates of prosciutto and mozzarella with a delicious mint sauce.

The fish of the day was Branzino, Sea Bass. They had an enormous one, big enough for our party of 5.

Our desserts were great.

This was the winner.

We wish Valentina and Alfonso and the team the very best for their new venture.

Here is a photo of the official opening. Barga is lucky to have them.

Ristorante Piazzangelio

Phone…(39) 351 870 9224

(39) 0583 392907

Chestnut polenta

I have revisited Il Totto in Elio Sassi in nearby Garfagnana to enjoy their version of cucina povera again. The restaurant famously served chestnut polenta and ossi salati, which translates as salted bones.

Once most of the meat has been removed pork bones are soaked in brine for a few days then boiled.

Il Totto

There was a large table near us and their polenta was delivered on a board and cut using a special tool.

Il Totto

Il Totto

Il Totto

Il Totto

Il Totto

Il Totto

Il Totto

They serve other things as well. I had ravioli with ragu and fried chicken a rabbit…delicious.

It is a lovely drive up to Elio Sassi. The views are glorious from the village. I highly recommend a visit.

Pizza at Es Vedra

Es Vedra opened recently in Fornoli. It is on the road out of town, just before the bend as you head towards Barga and set back from the road a little to allow parking in front.Es Vedra

As well as pizza there is an excellent taglieri.

Es VedraIt came with pasta fritta and flat bread.

Es Vedra

Es Vedra

We all ordered the spicy pizza with salami, pepperoncini and nduja. It was delicious!

Es Vedra The restaurant is bright and new and the young staff cheerful and helpful.

Es Vedra

Es Vedra

It is a great addition to Fornoli.

Es Vedra

Viale Papa Giovanni XXIII

339 4919880

 

 

Aperitivo

A new business has opened in Chifenti. La Tinaia…Enoteca – vino sfuso and spuntineria. Wine shop, wine on tap and snack bar…the perfect place for aperitivo.

La TinaiaLa Tinaia

La Tinaia

We dropped in recently for aperativo and got so much more. We ordered a bottle of Sangiovese, which turned out to be very good. We also ordered taglieri for 5. There was much more than we could eat and it was all delicious. The whole lot cost €10 each, very reasonable.

La Tinaia

La Tinaia

La Tinaia

La Tinaia

There was more, but somehow it disappeared before I could photograph it.

We met Cristian who served us well.

La Tinaia

La Tinaia 

Via del Brennero 15

Chifenti.

348 3396905

Necci in Montefegatesi

It has been a good year for chestnuts this year. Try some delicious chestnut pancakes in Montefegatesi on Sunday.

Montefegatesi

If you can’t make it on Sunday perhaps you could make your own necci.

You will need…

2 cups chestnut flour.

slightly less than 2 cups water

a pinch of salt

1 cup of ricotta (sweetened with a little sugar or honey if you wish)

Place the flour in a bowl with the salt. Slowly pour the water into the flour and stir with a whisk until the batter is smooth and there are no lumps.

Heat a little olive oil in a frypan and pour in a large spoonful of batter. Swirl the pan to spread the batter evenly. Cook until the bottom is golden then flip and cook the other side.

Stack the necci on a plate until all the batter is used.

Whip the ricotta and spread on the necci and roll up.

Eat.

Here is one I enjoyed at the chestnut festival in Lucchio last year.

Necci

It took me a while to acquire a taste for necci, but I now find them delicious.

Topo Gigio

On the road from Bagni di Lucca to Abetone at Fabbriche di Casabascana you will find Trattoria Bar Topo Gigio.

Topo Gigio

Topo Gigio

I had heard it was a fun place to stop for coffee or lunch so with some friends I decided to try it.

The tables were all full, but fortunately somebody left as we arrived and we found a spot. It is always a good sign when a place is packed at lunch time.

The service is brisk and friendly and soon our lunch arrived.

Topo Gigio

We ordered ravioli with the Gigio sauce, which is deliciously spicy.

Topo Gigio

The gnocchi came with the same sauce, but there were several other we could have tried.

Topo Gigio

We all ordered the Milanese with a side order of salad and chips…all good.

Topo Gigio

Topo Gigio

Topo Gigio

Topo Gigio is a fun place to stop…I will return.

Topo Gigio

Topo Gigio

Str. del’Abetone e del Brennero 25 – 27

Fabbriche di Gallicano

347 08035582