Dinner at Osteria Savio Volpe


#1

Made reservations here but was really on the fence since it required a taxi ride and it’s so nice to walk (me being from Los Angeles, where nobody walks [though I always thought the song was ‘nobody walks on a lake.’]) But a waiter at another restaurant recommended we go since it just won some award. So we took a taxi from the hotel to the resto. We were seated immediately. I had been very excited about the headcheese and tripe on the menu, and neither were available! Urrgg! So we went with the tasting menu, and instead of being disappointed, we had the best meal of our trip!

The waitress said she ‘told chef’ that I wanted tripe and headcheese and he was bummed because he was having a hard time getting folks to order offal. (I don’t know if she said bummed, that might be my Californian upbringing.)
There was this delicious looking kale salad on the table next to us, so we ordered that in addition to the tasting menu, but it was way too much food and I should have just trusted the chef, as he provided us with plenty of delicious and fresh seasonal vegetables.

Interior

Awesome kale salad but overkill on the food!

The first item of our tasting menu was something I would never have ordered on my own. Vegetables with an olive oil dipping sauce. The vegetables were incredibly fresh - watermelon radishes, carrots, endive, etc - and the sauce was superb. Italian fondue!

Delicious crudo!

Pasta stuffed with pigeon.

This pasta was rustic, delicious and satisfying!

I never, ever order chicken in a restaurant. But I was thrilled with this perfectly moist chicken.

Chicken came with roasted root vegetables.

Yummy dessert that we couldn’t finish!

A wonderful evening!


#2

Was the dipping sauce just good olive oil and salt? That’s pinzimonio, an early spring dish.


#3

Copied this from menu

Bagna Cauda; hot anchovy & garlic bath


#4

Assume that this is then different from simple olive oil and salt?


#5

Bagna cauda is a cold-weather dish from Piemonte.


#6

It tasted like it had cheese in it, it was so creamy. Does traditional bagna cauda have cheese?


#7

Never heard of that. Many recipes use a mix of olive oil and butter. Some call for cream. Cream and butter were local ingredients while olive oil was a luxury imported from other regions.


#8

Italian cream is pretty much always cultured, so that could have a cheesy taste. As could cultured butter.


#9

It was so good! Next spring when I have fresh radishes in the garden, I will try to make this.

I’ve gotten buffalo butter from Surfas before, maybe that would be a good addition!


#10

Went last night. After spending a while talking about the menu and having trouble choosing we decided to go with the $55 chef’s-choice prix-fixe and that worked out great. Four of us had:

  • Prosciutto di Parma, arugula, aged balsamic, Grana
  • White anchovy, radish, egg, bagnet vert, whipped butter
  • Kale, lemon pepper dressing, romano, pangrattato
  • Beets, ricotta, dates, carrots, olives, pistachios
  • Cavatelli, arugula, potato, anchovy, chili, pangrattato
  • Tortiglioni, beef braciola, Sunday sauce
  • pappardelle? with asparagus, cultured grass-fed butter, and mint
  • Meatballs, neck bone gravy
  • White beans, slow cooked greens, chili
  • Whole canary rockfish, purple potato, salmoriglio
  • strawberry & rhubarb tart with panna? gelato
  • Cannoli, ricotta, orange, cocoa, hazelnuts

Standouts for me were the kale salad (wilted with salt, labor-intensive but much better than raw), the tortiglioni, the pappardelle (probably thanks to the butter it tasted like it had more than the four simple ingredients), and the fish (bigger than it looks in the photo, four big portions). This is serious Italian food, the best ingredients combined simply to show them at their best. They make their own bread and ricotta.

We drank 2015 Terre del Barolo Verduno Pelaverga, a light but flavorful red that went with everything. Finished with amari including one I’d never seen before, Amaro Punito, very nice, sort of like Averna but lighter.


#11

That menu is great, but they really gave you three pasta courses? That seems like a lot of pasta.


#12

It all sounds fantastic! Glad you had a great meal! Wish going back didn’t involve a plane flight and passport!


#13

Actually ‘massaging’ kale with salt is easy peasy and just takes a few minutes. I make a local chef’s version which I just love.

The meal sounds super.


#14

There were four of us and they weren’t huge servings. Seemed like the right amount of food, we weren’t overly full.


#15

Massaging kale with salt is easy, but it takes a lot more time than just chopping it.


#16

But it takes fewer than five minutes. I’ve over-massaged and had a limp mess.


#17

Five minutes is a long time to massage kale, which is why I always either steam it or saute it. My moniker should be the lazy chef…


#18

It’s actually the shortest part of this recipe. I have to make the cheese ‘crisp,’ the salad dressing and poach the egg. Sorry I hijacked this thread but now I’m in the mood for that kale salad. Tomorrow.


#19

It’s not a lot of work to make one batch at home.


#20

My experience has been that I can’t do it ahead of time. Like over-massaging it, doing it ahead lets the salt render it too limp. So I get everything else ready and then do the kale. As long as we’re so off-topic, here’s a video of my favorite chef: