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Orvieto: L'Asino D'Oro

Vicolo del Popolo,9 , Phone: 0763/344406

Closing day: Monday

Reviewed by: Starlings from Canada, review #2053

When: 2006

A charming small trattoria with local clientelle and a menu that veers from the ordinary.

Directions: On a partially covered alley between the Corso Cavour and Piazza del Popolo

When you have been in Italy a while and you eat at modest trattorias, the menus all start to look the same. L’Asino d’Oro is a breath of fresh air in this regard, offering traditional Umbrian food that is so traditional that it has dropped off most other menus. The chef, Lucio, also takes some liberties with standard dishes and that works out well too.

The restaurant is composed of two simple rooms, and some tables are set in front in better weather. When the restaurant is full, as it very often is, it is noisy but wonderfully atmospheric. The waiters are patient in translating the menu, which is helpful as our phrasebook didn’t include most of the items on offer.

We had multiple meals here. One was the special New Year’s Eve meal, which was a multi-course extravaganza at 75 euros per person, including wine, which turned out to be a bargain. Regular meals run at about 75 euros for two with a good bottle of local vino.

Some things we tried: salt cod in thin tomato broth (pungent and satisfying), seriously caramelized whole onions (would go back for these), an outstanding lamb stew, a pasta with chocolate and nuts (we learned later that is a very old regional recipe), an excellent potato flan. Crostini are passed when you arrive, and they include one topped with a thin slice of lard, which was not to the taste of everyone in our party.

This is not a restaurant for unadventurous eaters, but if you are seeking something out of the ordinary, and an attention to quality, L’Asino d’Oro is a good bet.

Reviewed by: Liz from Canada (moderator), review #594

When: 2003

Innovative dishes that leave you wishing you could marry the chef!

This restuarant came recommended to us by the local artist Marion Forssell who had lived in Orvieto for the past few years, and said whenever she wants to celebrate a great event she heads to this place. Well, that was good enough for us so we headed over for lunch. Located in a quiet street this place delivered quality, quality, quality! I started with a wild boar prosciutto with a lemon oil dressing, simply divine! Frank had the most amazing roasted zucchinni with amaretto crumbs and olive oil, truly delicious! I followed that with a caper, anchovy and parma salad, sounds like a caesar, but so not at all; all the flavours were bursting, it was fantastic!

Everyone had a great lunch and will return again one day! 50 euros for lunch for four.

This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.

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