We were in Verona because Signor Lu had a medical appointment. The prognosis was good so we went out to celebrate.
First stop: pre-dinner drinks at Aquila Nera, a smart bar where it’s very easy to while away an hour or 2.
Practically next door, we stumbled upon Osteria Le Vecète.
The menu posted outside looked very tempting; and the prices looked reasonable. There was a prestigious Gambero Rosso sticker on the door (an Italian stamp of gastronomic approval). No further persuasion was needed. We ventured inside and were shown to a corner table (always a corner table).
The interior of Osteria Le Vecète was cosy. The look was rustic-Italian, which befitted the age and style of the building.
Our dinner was delicious. We began with 2 home-made pasta dishes – bigoli with a duck sauce and caserecce? casarecce? caserecci?- I cannot recall or track down the exact spelling – with zucchini, smoked ricotta cheese and chilli. Dishes like these ensure that I never order pasta outside of Italy.
Next we had some grilled swordfish (very nice), grilled vegetables and a grilled Argentine fillet of beef. The meat was exceptional: tender, succulent and full of flavour. My glass of valpolicella complemented the fillet perfectly.
For dessert we shared a classic tiramisu.
The final bill was 90 euros: ouch!
As well as great, simple food, the service was very good.
The osteria was not full and there were more foreign diners than Italian ones. (Americans, Germans, an Australian (me) and some other unidentifiable nationalities.)
The Americans were perusing enormous guidebooks, one of which bore the title Italy. The Germans were enjoying an immoderate quantity of a local white wine.
It was nice to find – with very little effort on our part – another good place to eat in Verona. The Gambero Rosso sign is always reliable.
Another effective way to find quality restaurants in Italy is to politely accost the locals – random strangers in the street even – and ask them if they can recommend a good place to eat.
There are many things wrong with this country but eating well is not one of them.