This was our favourite meal experience in Mantua and one of the best meals I've ever eaten in Italy. It's about twenty minutes' walk from the city centre and the place seemed to be full of locals and regular diners. We loved everything about this place: the gentleman who looked after our table (who I believe was Carlo, the owner), was so warm and friendly and had such pride in the restaurant and the food they were serving. We were seated outside on the garden patio and enjoyed the most exquisite food, absolutely made with love. I ordered the steamed pumpkin flowers stuffed with ricotta as an antipasto and it was divine. I savoured every mouthful very slowly. The presentation was also fabulous - one of the nicest dishes I ate over the entire trip. My husband had the 'spaghetti alla chitarra' with crispy culatello for his starter which was also excellent. For my main I went for ravioli filled with aubergine and a soft Italian goat's cheese with cherry tomatoes and basil. My husband opted for their pork dish, cooked at a low temperature and served with Dijon mustard and apples caponata. Both dishes were close to perfect. We couldn't fit in a dessert unfortunately but we had a nice bottle of Valpolicella from the Veneto.
Everything about the place suggests a high-end restaurant - except the prices that is. My starter was €10 and our pasta dishes from €12 -€14. They also offer the option of a half portion of pasta for about €8 - such a great idea as it allows you to try three courses without being completely stuffed to the gills. The surprise here was that the pork dish was also only €14. Excellent value overall. One of my favourite things about this place was the motto on their menu - "We do not charge cover - your presence here is a great pleasure for us". It certainly felt like that and we were treated like kings. One to revisit in the future for sure.
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