First gourmet meal of 2015: Castel Pietra
I guess everyone meets the new year with some thoughts about the one just passed, lots of of hope for the future, and for me at least seeking refuge in the joyful safety of the group of little albeit important habits that we call traditions.
As a matter of fact, a few days of skiing and hotel food, no matter how good and genuine, create in my family a great expectation for the departure day, when I pick a restaurant on the not always straight way back home, a restaurant that must feature:
– traditional mountain food
– rich wine list
– acknowledged by at least three different sources
– deviation from shortest path home under 60 km
My choice this year was ‘Castel Pietra’, its impressive wine list could only hit my curiosity being a wine bar in the first place.
We were greeted by marinated tuna, kindly offered by the professional staff.
It may resemble a familiar tuna steak, but the local definition of red tuna sashimi, with a twist, is certainly more accurate.
Carne fumada (“smoked meat”) is one of my favourite meat plates of this mountainous part of Italy, and a legacy of a time when the methods to preserve meat or any other food were limited and to smoke and cure meat was easier, and cheaper, to do than say salt it.
What you see here goes with a cheese crust basket, and every egg-lover’s dream: a fried yolk, ready to melt in our mouth, I would say the pleasure of the latter has managed to go beyond the delight of the meat.
To bend for fusion cuisine seemed like a minor sin, in front of a swordfish tartare with black rice and beetroot sauce.
But with few exceptions, Castel Pietra is the place to celebrate the region’s rich dairy production, like Gnocchi, sort of soft dumplings,
made with noted potatoes from Gresta valley, smoked ricotta from Primiero, the closest village, and poppy seeds.
I broke my rule and jumped to conclusions on this excellent lunch with a deer filet, we are in the mountains after all.
In my opionion it did not need any balance to counter the supposedly “wild” taste, but I loved the pickled red onion with it.
The bread-like cubes in the background is the salty version of a local sweet, the “smorum”, a fittingly floury match for the filet’s sauce.
Mission accomplished and buon appetito!
Ristorante Castel Pietra
Via Venezia, 28,
Tel. +39 0439763171
This post is also available in: Italian