Last Sunday was the first day of blue sky and sunshine in Viterbo for several weeks; the warmest day of the year so far. After a morning hike through Norchia, one of the best preserved Etruscan ruins in our area, we stopped for lunch at La Macina, a ristorante – pizzeria surrounded by a small olive grove on a hillside near Vetralla.
Large groups were already gathered around enormous tables in the sunny alcoves. It wasn’t quite warm enough to enjoy the outdoor tables under awnings, but it will be soon.
The restaurant features a variety of seasonal vegetables and local meats in simple, creative combinations. We ordered four pasta dishes, each with a different vegetable: artichokes, asparagus, chanterelles and ferlengo. All four were delicious, with just the right combination of ingredients to keep the sauce and pasta light but flavorful and filling.
Artichokes have been so good in the markets we decided to try two separate artichoke dishes, some whole with olive oil and lemon and some sautéed in olive oil. Both were so tender that the artichokes were almost creamy but not at all mushy.
Because we skipped the second plates, we tried three desserts: a crème brulee, pannacotta with fruit and a chocolate cake with very fresh whipped cream and nutella. They were beautiful and a nice complement to complete the meal.
We enjoyed the selection of dishes, the food, service and atmosphere very much and look forward to returning.
Loc. Valle Calandrella snc
Cura di Vetralla (VT)
Open for lunch and dinner