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To enter l'Osteria La Grotta is like jumping into the past, especially if it not so crowded. The walls are nicely decorated and the ambience is easy going, service very quick and accurate. Dishes respect the tradition of Brescia and the cellar is also well equipped. It is always open until 1 am, so you can stop just for a snack. Closes on Wed.
Favorite Dish: I tried the casoncelli di carne (homemade pasta with meat sauce)
Written Jan 21, 2009
Address: Vicolo del Prezzemolo, 10
Phone: +39 030 44068
The most representative dish in the Brescian culinary tradition is casonsèi, large ravioli stuffed with Parmigian cheese, spinach and eggs. Other popular dishes are strangolapreti ("priest stranglers"), elongated dumplings made of spinach, bread, eggs and cheese. From Mantua, we have the tradition of tortelli di zucca, stuffed with pumpkin, almond cookies, fruit mustard, raisins and pine nuts. A real delicacy! Also not to be missed, especially in the fall and winter, is polenta taragna, made from buckwheat, cream cheese and butter. Among the soups, mariconda is typical: bread and egg dumplings flavored with nutmeg and Parmigian cheese and cooked in broth.
Among the meats, Brescian gastronomy offers tripe, lepre in salmì (wild hare), mixed kabobs and uccelli scappati ("escaped birds"), which, the name notwithstanding, is actually pork wrapped in sage leaves. Also, typical, manzo all’olio, a very popular braised beef dish. One dish much loved by Brescians is polenta and game birds, which is eaten during hunting season.
Lake Iseo fish is highly-prized: try the baked tench with polenta. And for those with strong palates, there's lumache alla bresciana, snails cooked with spinach and seasoned with abundant grated Parmigian cheese.
Cheeses: from the mountains, we have puìna (a cow's milk ricotta), rosa camuna and the goat's milk cheeses, while the plains provide robiola and quartirolo; from the Lake Garda area, we have the famous formagelle di Tremosine. A very aromatic cheese called bagòss deserves a special mention; it is made from the milk of cows that have grazed in the summer mountain pastures, rich with wildflowers and aromatic herbs, and then aged for two years.
Wine: perhaps due to the influence of Venice, the Brescians are notoriously great wine-lovers and there is certainly no lock of production in Brescia: from Barbera, Marzemino, Schiava and Sangiovese grapes come the DOC reds such as Botticino and Cellatica. The hills of Lake Garda have two areas of DOC cultivation: Lugana, a dry white, and Garda Classico, which can be white, red or rosé.
Even more famous are the wines of Franciacorta, an area south of Lake Iseo: whites, rosés and reds, or a prestigious sparkling wine. Franciacorta DOCG is the most prized Italian sparkling wine, produced from Chardonnay and/or Pinot nero and/or Pinot bianco grapes. The characteristics of Franciacorta wines are: fine, persistent perlage; deep straw yellow color with greenish highlights; a mellow, but decisive, scent of yeast accompanied by delicate hints of dried fruit and cloves; pleasantly flavorful and fresh in the mouth.
Written Apr 28, 2008
Despite the odd temperamental chef and the occasional conniption by an offended sommelier, the haute cuisine world is known for its plummy-toned sophistication and cravated-civility...until truffle season hits. When those ugly looking mushrooms start to spore, law-abiding citizens come over all cosa nostra and everything gets a little bent out of shape.
Shady backroom deals, truffle smuggling, poaching rings, wholesale swindling and organised truffle racketeering are as much a part of the season as Périgueux sauces and shroomy pastas. The scarcity of the subterranean fungus, coupled with its unique flavour (a pungent earthy flavour that sends gourmands into orgasmic raptures) and the labour-intensive hunt for a handful of the stuff has, in recent times, sent the price rocketing to US$500 per kilogram.
The two types of tuber melanosporum that a true truffle aficionado would risk doing time for are the 'black diamond' truffle from the Perigord region in France and the white truffle unearthed from the Piemonte region of Italy. The black diamond has a strong woodsy scent while the white truffle has more of a garlicky overtone, but both types are universally adored by foodies. To get the most out of a truffle it should be eaten within three days of being picked, and is at its best thinly shaved over rice or risotto, mixed into an omelette or made into a rich Périgueux meat sauce.
Favorite Dish: Eating fresh truffles means being on the spot, ready to go, as soon as they spore. The place to do this is in the Italian city of Alba, in the region of Piemonte, at the end of September when the annual Fiero del Tartufo (Truffle Fair) takes place. It's worth visiting the old medieval town for a few days before the fair to acclimatise yourself for a fortnight of indulgent dining. Alba is a gourmand's arcadia - rows of Italian delicatessens stocked with homemade condiments, difficult-to-get ingredients and hardly-heard-of regional delicacies.
The fair itself begins in the last weekend in September and heats up with a parade followed by the Palio degli asini - a bareback mule race that cheekily moons the nearby town of Asti and its more serious horse race. By the second weekend in October the fair swings into full gear with cultural events galore, wine-tasting aplenty, a fungi display in the Palazzo dei Congress, and the chance to have truffles with everything.
Written Jun 7, 2005
My tip is to be patient at restauraunts. The food could take more than 3 hours to make. Order appetizers and don't expect to be waited on for a while. Also don't come starving cause you'll be waiting a while!
Written May 10, 2005
On Tuesday and Friday evening they offer an all you can eat sushi bar. Quite a nice outing! If you have a large party, I would suggest reservations. If there are only a few of you, walk in should get you a seat.
They also have a restaurant with a full menu in the back. I believe it is all hibachi and special order sushi. I have only done the sushi bar.
Warning: If you go for the sushi bar, you may not get the best service as the custom orders are filled first and the bar patrons are second.
Written May 7, 2005
Address: Via S. Rocchino 93, Brescia
It’s not as common in Brescia as in other, maybe bigger, italian cities, with places to eat in connection to the stadium. Outside the headtribune there is always a wagon, though, where you can buy sandwiches, hamburgers, sausages, beer, water and more, and also inside you can buy snacks from boys and girls who’s going around in the sectors.
Written Nov 24, 2004
a small restaurant
with a good service
and a great selection
if U like thing
ask 4 squiacatta
Written May 11, 2003
Address: via dello stadio, 27
Phone: 030 2004185
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