Posted by: debrakolkka | February 18, 2011

Lunch in the misty mountains

Sunday is a great day to go up into the mountains for lunch.  It was a cold, misty day when we headed up to nearby village,Vico Pancellorum, and restaurant  Buca di Baldabo for some delicous local food.


heading up to Vico Pancellorum

a mountain village sitting in the mist

we had a table by the fire

The menu changes according to what is in season and the waitress rattled off in rapid Italian what was available for lunch. I chose the pumpkin ravioli, Tina had gnocchi and Rina had ricotta and spinach ravioli. All the pasta was made on the premises and was delicate in flavour and very, very good.


my pumpkin ravioli


Rina's ravioli

Our next course was supposed to be accompanied by polenta made with chestnut flour, particular to the area. When it arrived at the table it was pronounced “un disastro” and hurriedly taken back to the kitchen. This sparked a disussion which involved the entire restaurant, with several diners making their way to the kitchen to offer advice on what to do with the next batch. We managed to eat our second course without the polenta. A plate did arrive later with some fresh ricotta and I would suggest that it is an aquired taste. The ricotta was excellent.


Rina and I had pork ribs

Tina had faraona - guinea fowl

poached pear with chocolate sauce

I had a walk around the village. I absolutely love these cold, wintery days. It is such a contrast to my life in Australia. I thought it was a perfect day.


village houses and olive trees

the village church

a perfect winter scene



  1. Wow, what an awesome place to go for lunch… and a misty walk afterwards to work off all that de-liiicious looking food… thanks for sharing.

    • It wasn’t much of a walk, I must admit, but I am in Bologna now, walking my feet off.

  2. I love the food, yummy yummy yum yum. It is so weird to see such a Wintery scene when we are in such a warm climate. Enjoy. xx

  3. I just love these cold days. I will love spring when it somes as well, but there is something wondeful about winter here.

  4. I love that people went to the kitchen to offer their advice on what to do. Can you imagine that happening in Australia?! Your lunch looks superb.

    • It is so much fun- like lunch and theatre at the same time. People take their food very seriously here.

  5. Looks soooo delicious.

    • It was very delicious.

  6. I love love love that restuarant-we have eaten there a couple of times. We looked at an apartment there when we were searching for real estate and found the food and service so fresh and inviting. Although we ended up buying in Crasciana we look forward to heading back in March to Vico.

    • The food is great isn’t it? I’ll be here in March.

  7. Those pork ribs made my mouth water!
    I love your photos, Deb! – they remind me of an Italian painting of a higgedly piggedly village hugged by the misty mountains. Gives one a sense that time stands still in those places.

    I wish I witnessed the drama involved in making the polenta. Seems to me that drama is part and parcel of Italian village life. I remember well the drama in Marco’s kitchen between him and his wife (I think), because diners could hear lots of shouting in rapid Italian from that direction. Makes life interesting.

    • I love the drama in these family restaurants. It is such fun to be part of it.

  8. How fun that the diners offered the kitchen advice 🙂 Imagine that happening in Oz…., think not!!!! Another gorgeous & enviable day out Deb, there is nothing nicer than a wonderful meal by the fire & a fresh crisp day outside. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  9. Deb, any chance of you bringing home a ‘local’ recipe for those lucious looking pork ribs- obviously sloooooow cooked.
    How about a story from Bologna on some interesting Bolognese Sauce,and is it true that the origional version of this did not have garlic in it?

    Di Cant

    • I’ll see what I can do about the prok ribs. I don’t know about the garlic in Bolognese sauce. I will investigate.

  10. What a great Sunday lunch post, good food, kitchen drama, misty walks…. perfect 🙂

    • I think they are perfect. Mind you, I don’t mind a day at the beach as well.

  11. Cold, misty days are the best. That food looks delicious!

    • You should come here and try it.

  12. We have a house in Vico and we live in County Clare, Ireland. I have enjoyed reading your blog, especially this one and seeing the pictures of Vico. I will be there in May. Did you know that when you leave Vico and if you take a left on the made road to Albetone, there is a great suspension bridge that crosses the river.
    On your last blog you spoke to my cousin Ida who also owns a house in Vico. Like her, I hope to meet you at some time.

    • I’m glad you are enjoying the blog. I had no idea about the suspension bridge. I will look for it next time I go. I am around until mid May. so hopefully we will meet at the Bar Italia sometime.

  13. Oh, you made me laugh, Deb! I just think it’s so funny that the failed dish ended up with all these well meaning Italians in the kitchen, trying to offer advice! Shame though, I would love to see what sort of polenta they made with chestnut flour! 🙂

    • We did eventually get some chestnut flour polenta. I was sort of brown and blobby. It tasted OK, but didn’t look the best. I worked hard to stop myself from laughing at the polenta conversation as it was all taken very seriously.

  14. I get the seriousness of it, I think I miss the food more than anything else in Italy and the passion that they feel for it

    • It was serious, but I found it comical. I like that they are interested in good food.

  15. I LOVE IT! Have you ever seen Anthony Bourdain’s film, shot entirely in black and white, about Italian cuisine? There’s a great scene involving a heated discussion in a restaurant, bordering on fisticuffs. It’s amazing how much Italians talk about food…have you noticed? On trains, in taxis…just walking around…they are often talking about food and various preparations.

    The poached pears get my vote. Love ’em.

    • I haven’t seen Anthiny Bourdain’s film, but I will look out for it. I love invoving pears.

  16. The pasta looks scrumptious, yummii the gnocchi, ravioli… delicious. Can’t wait to go to Italy to savour all these dishes.

  17. Lovely to see the misty mountain village! We have a little place up in Vitiana not far from Ponte a Serraglio, so it reminded me of it. As for the food – delicious! Can’t wait to be there Easter time, let’s hope the sun will shine on us but if it doesn’t we’ll still enjoy the delights of the area. We’ll have to visit Vico Pancellorum and try out that lovely food.

    • I haven’t been to Vitiana, but I have been close. You should go to Vico when you come. I hope the weather will be kind to you at Easter – and me too, I will still be here then.

  18. Love the town of Vico and this restaurant. Can’t wait to return. Love Anthony Bourdain’s series on Italy. His second wife is a beautiful, young Italian woman from Sardegna (smart guy). They have an adorable daughter.
    Our little home is in Pieve dei Monti di Villa, right above Granaiola. One of our Irish friends named it “the house of the blue hydrangeas.” If you happen to drive by, give a little wave for me. Sure miss it and can’t wait to get back asap.

  19. Me encantaria saber si hay personas de apellido Gismondi,que podrian ser parientes de mi nona .

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