I dream about going to Calabria for years, until we finally decided to go after the recommendation of an Italian chef, he suggested we try the cuisine of Antonio Abbruzzino. We landed at a small airport on a windy day to try perhaps the only one star Michelin in the region of Reggio. The airport could have been anywhere and the region seemed without much life. Having said that we didn’t see much except a car, a table and the plane.
Renting a car we put input our GPS the address and off we were. After twenty-five minutes of highway, we landed in a village, the right street but no restaurant anywhere in sight. Feeling panic-stricken we had a timetable and the clock was ticking. We had to be back to the airport in only a few hours to catch our flight onwards to Palermo.
Calling the restaurant we discovered we were lost and we were really lost. The next step was to ask someone and so trying to find anyone who could direct us was hopeless until we landed the police. We showed our map, our target and it was almost lost in translation when the Police suggested we go to a nearby restaurant owned by a friend. I had no choice but to reject this idea (politely) and with some friendly persuasion and help from the restaurant they escorted us to the restaurant.
The restaurant is located in a strange place, at least for us, located at the side of a building where there are shops and above it looked like apartments. No real view or special setting but once you walk inside the southern hospitality begins.
The cuisine had a level and the flavours were pure and solid. It was clear that there was a good use of local ingredients and plenty of local wines.
The wines were “so-so” except the Nestos was caught our attention as an interesting wines. We didn’t feel let down one bit.
The rouget was simply prepared and one of the best rouget preparations I’ve tasted. This dish was excellent, it was carefully cooked to ensure that the skin remained silky red without being over cooked.
The shrimp was also combined with a good flavors even though shrimp in the south of Italy is served in every corner.
There is no doubt that the chef’s kitchen staff and waiters made our trip there an experience we will add to our long food memories – a worthwhile travel to explore new territory.