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Friday, September 07, 2012

Pranzo - La Libera

Today for lunch, we're going to one of the places we didn't have time to visit last year - Ristorante Osteria La Libera

The restaurant consists of 3 dining areas - the main room houses a large wine cellar and some communal tables - there's a small room which we're in that leads in one direction to the kitchen and  onward to a much larger dining area.

There menu has a mix of traditional and modern but they all are made with the same ethos - seasonal and local. It's interesting that the owner and sommelier Flavia Boffa was also Italy's first female truffle judge.

For starters:

Musetto di Vitella cotto fondente funghi porcini ed emulsione di aceto

Musetto di Vitella is veal nose/face and it's been cooked under liquid. It's served topped with thick slices of sauteed fresh porcini and accompanied by a vinegar emulsion. A wonderful aroma came off this dish, full of the fragrance of porcini. The musetto was extraordinarily tender and had excellent flavour.

Insalatina di coniglio, verdure di forno e fegato grasso affumicato

Rabbit salad with oven cooked vegetables and smoked foie gras - the first bite of this dish left me stunned at just how good it was. The foie gras sliced so thinly that as soon as it hit your mouth it virtually dissolved on your tongue. This hit of foie gras was followed by the flavour of smoke, so perfectly in balance it was amazing. I had to immediately get Paalo to have a taste and when his eyes rolled back into his head, I knew this was every bit as good as I thought it was. As I said at the time, this was one of the best things I've ever eaten. It wasn't just the foie gras, the rabbit was soft and moist, the vegetables were cooked so well, everything had a place and a reason to be on the plate. You really can't ask for more.

For mains:

Prima taglio di Vitella cotta rossa, servito freddo, fagiolini e pomodori

First cut (or nut) of Veal cooked pink, served cold with baby beans and tomatoes. Delcious, tender with excellent flavour - the salad of perfectly cooked beans and properly ripened tomatoes was the ideal match.

Parmigiana di Melanzane

Eggplant parmigiana - Paalo is a proper meat eater but he could happily eat this every day.

Selezione di Formaggi

We'd been staring at the cheese cupboard all through our meal so it was no surprise we decided on a cheese plate - an excellent selection - from soft goat and sheep cheese to harder cooked cheese, it was a delicious trip around the cheese of this area

Once again we've been thoroughly impressed with the food and we will certainly be returning.

The details:

Ristorante Osteria La Libera
Via Elvio Pertinace, 24
12051 Alba

0173 293 155

Lunch - Tuesday to Saturday - 12 to 2.30pm
Dinner - Monday to Saturday - 7 to 11pm
Sunday closed
Open every day in October.


Always check the website for opening hours.


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