About that lunch…. you remember…the one I pined for during the hike up to the Rocca? Of course. It was the only thing that kept me climbing up that damn tower.
Well, we found a sweet little trattoria in the very nearby village of Castiglione d'Orcia. This town had actual stores that were open, and a few bar/caffe places. We saw people driving around, etc…so we found parking and headed up into this very pretty town.
They have a castle tower that is being restored, so we'll have to watch the progress over the next few years...
We came across this sweet looking spot, and could here pots and pans banging around in the kitchen, so we decided to give it a try.
I was hungry, don't you know..
|Trattoria Il Cassero.|
As seems to often be the case, because it's March, we were the only diners. The nice folks, a husband and wife team, I'm assuming, took good care of us. We were seated in a small room which had some interesting artwork as well as a fireplace. I was happy.
|I thought this was pretty cool..|
|I've never met a fire I couldn't resist "poking".|
Plus, what wacky decoration!
The chef had come out and taken our orders, very helpful, too, and we had our wine, just waiting and enjoying the views...
|I'm so ready for some pasta, please…….|
We didn't have an antipasto this time, but each ordered pasta and contorni(side dishes), as well as a cheese plate to share for our "secondo", or main dish, sort of.
Our pasta came first-
|Ravioli with leeks, spinach, and roquefort.|
The sauce was so great..a little cinnamon in there, adding a slightly
sweet and exotic note, very well balanced with the roquefort.
|Maltagliata, a wide egg noodle, with roasted Romanesco broccoli and olives.|
I loved it. The noodles were house made, and so perfectly chewy/silky.
The sauce on this was spicy. Two completely different red sauces.
The dishes took time, and I'm glad they did. They were so good-you just knew there was someone back there that really cared.
We ate slowly, switching plates more than once. We chatted a little with the chef, as he would pop out to see how we were doing, and it was all just so relaxing and comfortable.
Next came our contorni, and another sip of wine...
|"Carciofi alla Grappa"|
Artichokes simmered in grappa.
Need I say more? Yes, good!
|Oven baked vegetables that were the best I've tasted.|
Perfectly seasoned, and roasted until just slightly charred in spots.
Lastly, we enjoyed a wonderful cheese course. Not extensive, there were three cheeses, each aged longer than the next, and the fig marmalade that accompanied was just right.
The wife makes the marmalade, and I would have loved to bring some home.
I'll tell you, I especially enjoyed this meal, after hoofing it up that giant Rocca-tower thing, I'll tell you. Every bite was a bite well earned, as well as delicious.
I would say that if you are in the area, take the time to seek this little place out. We were so happy we found it.
After coming home, I had looked it up, and the reviews, especially from Italians, were so-so…maybe the meat dishes aren't that great..., I don't know. These pasta dishes were really kind of special, though.
I say go!
Climbing the Rocca first? Well, that's up to you….
In Castiglione d'Orcia-
Trattorio Il Cassero