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This restaurant is just 1.5-hour drive from Venice.
www.calandre.com Chef: Massimiliano Alajmo
Upstairs from the restaurant is their Hotel Maccaroni.
Across the street is their gourmet store In.gredienti.
Attached to the 3-star restaurant is their bar restaurant, il Calandrino.
Here is the lounge area before our world class treat.
Image 7: Grand Classics (8-course): €190 In.gredienti (8-course): €190 (2009)
À la carte menu: Appetizer €30; First course €30; Second course €60
Closed on Sunday, Monday, and 3 weeks in August.
Image 8: Amuse Bouche
Squid and onion purée; Stockfish sandwich; Mini-pizza with warm liquid inside. A nice innovative canapé to begin our meal.
Image 9: Amuse Bouche
Ricotta cheese ball smothered with sea urchin sauce garnished with cheese flakes
Image 10: A wide selection of bread.
It was great that they allowed us to order different tasting menus, so we tried both the Grand Classics and In.gredienti.
Image 11: Grand Classics
A vegetable salad consisted of broad bean, tomato and celery puree. Very simple... nothing exciting.
Image 12: In.gredienti
A seafood salad composed of sweet prawn, shrimp, calamari with raspberry and lychee dressing. Definitely better than the plain salad of the Classics menu.
Image 13: Grand Classics
Chilled thin spaghetti topped with clam, mussel and shrimp
Etna Biancodiscaselle 2006 Benanti
Image 14: In.gredienti
A disappointing course of caviar on basmati rice with mackerel sauce. Despite the luxurious ingredient, it was pretty dull.
Franciacorta Brut "Cabochon" 2003 Monterossa
Image 15: Grand Classics
This is their signature "Cuttlefish black cappuccino" - potato cream with diced cuttlefish and ink at the bottom. The best dish so far!
Image 16: In.gredienti
Tagliatelle with pistachio and rose. It was rather a tasteless dish. The Classics menu was obviously a better choice than this In.gredienti menu.
Bianca di Valguarnera 2004 Duca di Salaparuta
Image 17: Grand Classics
Risotto in saffron cream and liquorish.
Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi Classico 2004 Fattoria Santa Barabara
Image 18: In.gredienti
Finally, a first decent dish appeared in this menu - raw Venison cubes sitting on an egg cream topped with eggplant and dill. A superb quality of tender meat.
Rosso del Veneto Agno Tinto 2004 Vignalta
Image 19: Grand Classics
Resting on mayo sauce were chopped venison with black truffle shavings. Wow... the chopped venison basically melt-on-the-tongue.
Langhe Rosso "Sito Moresco" 2006 Gaja
Image 20: The brilliance of good quality truffle is that not only does it have a nice aroma before putting into your mouth, but also the fragrance goes back to your nose after putting in your mouth! Another highlight from this Grand Classics menu!
Image 21: In.gredienti
Beef loin served with potato puff and chili pepper with egg sauce on the side. A nice course, but the venison from the Grand Classic menu has stolen all the spotlights from this menu.
Image 22: Grand Classics
Crispy roasted pork belly with potato cream and tomato onion sauce.
Amarone della Valpolicella 2004 Zenato
Image 23: In.gredienti Just when we thought the Grand Classic menu was the obvious winner of our evening, this kidney dish turned out to be the most memorable dish of the night. Hidden underneath arugula leaves were veal kidney and red onion with mustard ice cream. We never thought the texture of kidney could be that amazing... it was in between gummy and crunchy! The chilled mustard cream was also sensational!
Il Carbonaione 2002 Poggio Scalette
Image 24: Grand Classics
Layers of thin pastry with spice, ricotta cheese, and chocolate.
Veneto Passito Bianco I Capitelli 2000 Anselmi
Image 25: In.gredienti
A layer of raspberry sandwiched between ginger and cardamom meringue and strawberry cream.
Passito di Pantelleria 2006 Donnafugata
Image 26: Grand Classics
Vanilla ricotta ravioli with raspberry sauce
Image 27: In.gredienti
Curry and grated coffee bean ice cream. A brave combination which wasn't bad at all.
Image 28: As a unique after-dessert refreshment, our server arrived and asked each of us to open up our mouth. He then sprayed grappa onto our tongue!
Image 29: A stunning array of petits-fours - skewered melon mandarin ice ball, raspberry vanilla phyllo, and white chocolate coated strawberry
Image 30: And finally a chocolate lollipop to finish another Michelin 3-star meal in Italy! Overall, the meal had a few exceptional dishes but a few very disappointing dishes too. I expected more at this level of restaurants!