Friday, August 29, 2014

Ristorante Campioni-- tennis anyone?

Apologies in advance.  I forgot to bring my camera or my phone last night when we went out to dinner.  That's too bad, because we enjoyed a very nice meal at Ristorante Campioni, an Italian restaurant maybe a couple of miles from our temporary apartment.  We went there because the two restaurants closest to us are closed for vacation and we wanted to try something new.  The lady who owns the apartment we're in recommended Ristorante Campioni, which is a fine establishment right next to a tennis club.

Bill and I really should have made reservations.  When we walked into the place at around 7:00, it was humming with business.  I noticed many of the tables were reserved.  By the time we left at about 8:45 or so, the place was pretty much packed.  Most everyone was dressed casually and I saw several kids there apparently enjoying a nice dinner after playing tennis.

The menu is in Italian and German (an English menu is on their Web site) and offers everything from pizza and pasta to impressive fish, duck, and veal dishes.  There's a wine list and a full bar.  And if you're lucky, you can sit by a window that overlooks indoor tennis courts.

Although Bill and I like to splurge when the mood strikes, we ended up going simple last night.  I had a salami pizza and Bill had penne pasta with a spicy tomato and basil sauce.  We washed it down with a bottle of Primitivo, otherwise known as Zinfandel and San Pellegrino.  Both of our meals were under ten euros and neither of us could finish them.

My salami pizza was made with a perfect crust, a thin layer of sauce, a layer of cheese, and large slices of sliced salami.  I had heard from Samantha Brown on Passport to Europe that you shouldn't take a knife and fork to Italian pizza, though I noticed that's what the Germans around me were doing.  I gave up on eating pizza the American way when some lady gave me a dirty look.

Bill really enjoyed his pasta.  He said the sauce had a zing to it and tasted very fresh.  I didn't try his pasta because I had pasta for lunch.  Still, it looked delicious and I probably would have liked it myself.

I noticed other people getting some impressive looking dishes.  One couple ordered a very impressive grilled fish.  My eyes got big when they brought it out on a sizzling platter.  I know I would not have been able to eat the whole thing.  I love fresh fish, especially the way the Italians prepare it.

We decided to have dessert.  Bill went with his usual tiramisu, which was a very good choice at Ristorante Campioni.  It was light, creamy, and really hit the spot after his spicy pasta dish.  I decided to be brave and ordered the Cassata Siciliana, which turned out to be an ice cream treat.  My dessert consisted of very rich chocolate and vanilla ice cream with what tasted like cherries and lemon rind impregnated within it.  It was garnished with strawberries, a persimmon, and chocolate syrup.

The bill came to 44 euros and, I think, was well worth the cost.  Service was friendly, competent, and attentive and the food was great.  If we go back, I will definitely try something more adventurous than pizza!  And we will definitely make reservations!  Ristorante Campioni is definitely a popular place with the locals!



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