Il Tartufo: Charming, Romantic, Friendly & Good Food
During our week-long driving trip through Tuscany and Umbria, we spent one evening in Spoleto. There's not much to see or do in Spoleto and there aren't very many dining options in town, but while wandering around we decided to pop in this restaurant to eat dinner. The owner / chef greeted us warmly and welcomed us with open arms. The restaurant was empty around 9 pm so we thought we must've been dining very late (and even commented how nice it was for them to accommodate us) but by around 10 pm, the place started filling up! Italians love to eat late at night!
You can tell the pride of ownership in this place. A lovely little room with dark wood paneling lends a cozy atmosphere. Each table has fresh flowers and yummy homemade bread. It felt like a chef's space; a foodie atmosphere for people who truly love food. The chef even sends out a small plate (amuse bouche) before your meal -- ours was a tasty tuna plate. You could tell that every dish was prepared with love and care.
We wanted a very light meal so we both ordered a glass of house wine (as with most places in Italy, this was very tasty red wine) and the zucchini blossom appetizer. The zucchini blossoms are a regional specialty and are not to be missed! Delicious and stuffed with tasty ricotta cheese, these things were one of the most memorable dishes I ate during my entire trip to Italy! For our main course we ordered the pasta course (again, only because we weren't starving), and there was no issue with us doing this and skipping the main meat course. In some restaurants in Italy, this is frowned upon but here it was no problem at all.
Our pasta course consisted of housemade fresh pasta with zucchini and a delicious buttery cheese sauce. The portion size was small but perfectly satisfying! I loved how fresh this dish tasted. For dessert, we were brought a complimentary plate of biscotti and cookies. Great food and personalized service make this the perfect place to eat if you find yourself in Spoleto.
This isn't a cheap place to eat but you really get a fancy, 5 star atmosphere in a casual setting. We were dressed in jeans (since it was raining) and we were dressed appropriately. I was worried that we were underdressed when we first went inside but as the place filled up, everybody was dressed in a casual / smart casual manner; don't worry if you didn't bring fancy clothes on your trip to Italy!
The owner and chef himself also waited on us and was absolutely charming, kind and delightful. He would smile as we gushed over how excellent the food was. He was truly beaming with pride. He spoke very good English as well (though we had fun attempting to converse with him in his native language; even with our limited Italian skills we had no problem communicating with him). I only put this in my review because I know that Americans in particular get nervous about the language barrier. If you have a translation dictionary you'll do fine. If I remember correctly, they had all of the menu items translated into English as well.
To avoid a ZTL ticket, park outside the city walls. There's lots of paid / metered parking. The restaurant is a short walk and is right inside the main gate.
Favorite Dish: Ricotta stuffed zucchini blossoms. A local Umbrian specialty made with super fresh produce. So yummy.
- Food and Dining
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
Trattoria del Festival: Best Chef and Best Food in Spoleto!
Owned by the Patrizi family, this restaurant will give you far more than you pay for!
The "tourist menu" is authentic and wonderful. It changes every day and is a GREAT value if you want to sample the local cuisine. The staff is great and they handle large groups with the attention you deserve.
They make their OWN balsamic vinegar that you will want to take home with you. Be sure to try their Farro! It's an old Roman grain that the chef does miraculous things with.
Of course, the truffles that Spoleto is famous for are their specialty. Even their house wines are fresh and delicious!
Favorite Dish: The lasagna (when available), is by far the best I have ever tasted, but ALL of their dishes are magnificent. Mrs. Patrizi is the head chef and she is truly as talented as she is beautiful.
The entire family and staff make this a MUST for anyone fortunate enough to visit this fine city.
- Food and Dining
La Taverna La Lanterna: One of the best meals of my life
This was truely one of the best meals I've ever had. I know people say that a lot, but this place is amazing. It's just a small little local joint, run by a young couple, but the food is so fresh, and tasty. They feature typical rustic, Umbrian style dishes. Nothing fancy, just plain good.
Favorite Dish: The crostini is the best I've ever had, and so were the truffles.
- Wine Tasting
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
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