This trattoria in the heart of Siena has been a reference point for anyone looking for Tuscan specialities for the past 50 years. The furnishings are ... More
Trattoria La Torre
This trattoria in the heart of Siena has been a reference point for anyone looking for Tuscan specialities for the past 50 years. The furnishings are simple and the rooms filled with diners. There is a display of the home-made pasta near the entrance. Various types of pasta dishes, pici, gnocchi and tortellini della torre. The roast pork steaks are excellent and there are various other roast meats.
My husband and I went to Italy (rome, venice, and siena) back in 2006. We tried many restaurants for lunch and dinner, and frankly was disappointed in 95% of them. None of them offered us pasta that looked "home-made" and fresh - most looked like pasta out of a bag. The bread was always hard. And mostly everything was over-priced. So when we went to this little restaurant listed on lonely planet's guide, we were uncertain of how it would be.
The funny thing is, our first sight were these beads running down a string, across the doorway. Many beads, like a little curtain. It wasn't a great first impression. But when we entered, we saw the fresh pasta laid out, ready to be prepared. We saw a grandfather chatting to his grandson...and clearly the grandfather worked at the restaurant. We ordered their food, my husband the tortellini, and I had spagghettini. It was the yummiest pasta we've ever had! Ever! We loved it so much, we are doing another european visit, with 2 nights in siena, just to go back to this restaurant. My husband said, it was the only restaurant we went to, that you could clearly see it was family-run, and that the art of cooking was still prevalent.
This is a restaurant not to miss. You will not be disappointed.
Just read the review from the person from Los Angeles . She could not be more on point!
Our private tour guide told us (3) where to eat.
This was my 4th day in Italy and learned very quickly NOT TO ORDER, but ask the owner/chef to pick anything they want to serve me. IT WORKS!!
When I read the other review it brought tears to my eyes, I just knew it when we entered to sit at one of 7 tables that this was an absolute gold mine of the best Italian cuisine. It is listed in Rick Steves' Florence and Tuscany 2009. But seriously understated. When you visit Siena do not pass this by, like she said it has those hanging rope thingy things, Oh read the NY TIMES review posted on the entrance door way, then enter with your palate stimulated and panging and ready to enjoy the best.
Ok, we just got back from Italy and you must, must, eat at this place I'm about to suggest in Siena. First off let me tell you a bit about myself just to give you an idea of what my standards are. I live in Los Angeles and eat out at expensive restaurants quite a bit. However, no amount of celebrity or world renound chefs can honestly compare to "Tratorreria La Torre" (I'm sure my spelling is incorrect). It's located near the main square in a small side alley. Ask the locals where it is for there is nothing but a small sign indicating its existence. Even once you find the sign you will second guess yourself because the door is hidden by those hanging bead types of things. It's as if the locals don't really want you to find the place. The only reason we found it was because we gave our tour guide a hefty tip and asked her where the locals eat. A good rule of thumb in any foreign country restaurant is if the tourists outnumber the locals, walk out. This definitely wasn't the case with this restaurant. We were the only tourist in there. The restaurant is tiny, approximately the size of a small living room, including the kitchen which is all visible. There was only one waiter who spoke only Italian, and two cooks. In addition to this, there was no menu. The waiter simply told you your options for the day. If I had to guess just by their interactions, I'd guess the waiter was grandpa, and the cooks were husband and wife. All the ingredients were laid out on what appeared a kitchen table.
Now for the food. We had pasta as our first course. It was light and extremely delicious. For the main dish we had the osso buco. First let me tell you, I am not religious, but I swear the first bite I took made me feel like I had seen the light. This was by far the best food I had ever eaten. Never mind Mortons or the Ivy here in LA. Just thinking about it now makes me want to go back to Siena just to eat here again. The meat simply dissolved in your mouth and the sauce was amazing. The house wine was delicious, we drank a whole bottle and we usually don't like wine. The home made tiramisu was creamy and delightful.
Seriously, if you go here, can you please, please bring me back some osso buco. Warning, if you eat here you will never be able to enjoy food from other places the same again.
The restaurant dose not have a menu, but the owner will quickly be at your table with his suggestion for the day. In our case it was lunch and we kept it light with a taglietelle and a gnocchi both were excellent, followed by a salad and Cafe! (oh yes the wine, Rosso di Casa good value. I am still in Seina for 10 days and will be going back.
In all Italy (I had been in San Remo,
Genova, Lerici, Cinqueterre, Lucca,
Florence, Rome and Milano)this
restaurant was the best! Best people,
best pasta, best sauce, wine and most
of all, the reslly best muzzarela!
Clarissa Klein (Brazil)
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