Our last night in Tuscany, we were daunted by the idea of having to choose our last meal. Until of course the words 'Solociccia' were sung. This was the last of the Dario Cecchini trifecta, so seemed only fitting to farewell Tuscany with a bang..
We again arrived a little early and were only to pleased to bask in the generous hospitality of the man himself just across the road in the base of the butcher shop. House wine was poured in tumblers, lardo & salami along with crusty tuscan bread lined the right side wall - and all of a sudden we are mingling with 30 people who are all about to become our friends.
We are sitting the 9pm seating at Solociccia tonight, so when a gush of people are seen dispersing from across the street, we know our time is near. A quick re-set and we are all ushered over. At the door our names are checked, and seating assigned in little rooms on street level and below. We notice our name in the book with a big VIP beside it (*Squeal*). We are lead down the stairs, and off to a little table on the side with full view of the kitchen. We are sitting amongst vat's of olive oil and mineral water on tap, and get to look into see all the magic happening in the kitchen. There is another couple who are sitting with us. She works for Microsoft and he has a large sausage casing factory somewhere on the West Coast. He supplies sausage casing's to Mario Battali (which is how he got the booking, and the VIP seat). They were extremely lovely, and was a pleasure to share company and tales with two passionate foodies.
The table is set again with bowls of crisp, fresh vegetables, that are dipped in local olive oil, red wine vinegar and Dario's salt along with bowl of crusty Tuscan bread. We start on carafe's of red wine, and are informed if we need anymore we can top up from the vat's behind us.
Then a plate of toasted bread topped with ragu arrives.
The day's fritto misto arrives, which is a bowl of treasures. We found squid, octopus, fish, cauliflower, onion, fish and little bite sized pieces of crumbed veal.
The plates just keep coming, next are little morsels of beef that have been minced and seasoned that are threaded onto sprigs of rosemary. They are generously doused in lemon juice and olive oil and are just divine.
We see some big chunks of meat being sliced in front of our eyes. The other great thing about being on this table is that we received first plate of everything that left the kitchen. I think it would have been torture otherwise .....
The perfectly rare beef comes dressed with sage, rosemary, salt & olive oil. Bowls of white beans are a great accompaniment.
Pork arrives nestled under a salad of crisp carrot, red onion & celery. The pork is so soft and tender, the perfect contrast for the fresh, crisp vegetables.
The slow braised beef is dark and rich with chunks of sweet red onion throughout. There's no doubting that any meal attached to the master, Dario Cecchini, is bound to be packed full of meat !!
The meal ends with Military liquers,
Coffee & olive oil cake.
This ritual seems all so familiar now, and neither of us would have any problem repeating again soon.
Via XX Luglio, 11 Panzano in Chianti Firenze
tel.+39 055 852727
fax +39 055 852700
È MEGLIO PRENOTARE
monday / tuesday / wednesday: closed
thursday / friday / saturday: 19.00 or 21.00