Jerusalem artichoke…I searched for her since she left venissa in Mazzorbo, a small island in the Venice lagoon. The new restaurant of Antonia Klugmann is almost hidden away in the countryside of collio. Located in Dolegna del Collio (Vencò), a small province of Gorizia its a few kilometers from the border of Slovenia.
The landscape at Vencò’s restaurant is hidden by the forest and a river that draws the natural border between Collio and eastern hills of Italy and Slovenia. The restaurant is newly constructed beside her seventeenth century building that Antonia will eventually reconstruct. The setting is surrounded by vineyards and bright blue skies and green pastures.
The decor is modern, warm and decorated in an elegant manner with wood on wood. You can see her Grandfather’s influence, a longstanding member of the community of Trieste, she describes some of him as an important influence in her life. Pictured below is the mid-century super cool iconic mushroom lamp by sonneman, a collectors treasure, chic and fitting for this young chef.
Directly behind her kitchen, along the river grows Jerusalem artichokes that thrive in the wild. Her territory is rich and prosperous with garden herbs and wild nettles hand-picked and used.
The kitchen is tucked behind a glass window and is very well equipped with a Marrone kitchen. The staff is all young and they work with the direction and care of the chef, who is gentle with her co-workers, a positive attitude seems ever-present.
The service is managed by Antonia’s boyfriend Romano who carefully watches over the dinning room. With only fifteen seats, it remains very cozy and intimate. The wine cellar has many of the local producers and it’s a pleasure to have a chance to try so many of the wines from collio and slovenia.
There is no doubt that Antonia is a rising star, and a trip to her restaurant is a nice opportunity to try her intuitive and inventive cuisine, respecting both the local flavors of the collio and the rich adriatic sea. Her food is moody while she remains the opposite, tranquil, and almost always smiling.
Antonia’s food has a good energy, the style is sculpted by her know how, and her use of fish, shows her first hand experience she gained from working in venice.
The advantage of the collio is that the adriatic is no more than a short car ride away. There is no doubt that this region is underestimated and over looked in so many ways. If you think next time to go to tuscany, think collio! 🙂 and think Antonia Klugmann :-).
Located in Dolegna del Collio Location Vencò-Gorizia.
T.+39 338 18 65 573