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Ponte a Moriano: La Mora

Via Sesto di Moriano 1748 , Phone: 0583.406402

Reviewed by: caplanco from CO, review #2201

When: 2006

While we did not think La Mora was as good a value as other restaurants we'd enjoyed, it does serve creatively prepared and presented food.

Lunch for 2 with wine Ä103

We'd read about La Mora and had made a lunch reservation planning to be there on our way back to Lucca after our trip to the morning market in Castelnuovo.

When we arrived there were only three other filled tables in the nice back garden room and it was very quiet.

For antipasti: capesante con crema pisi y zaffron; zucchini flowers stuffed with risotto and caramelized red cabbage. We shared polenta stuffed ravioli with porcini.

For our secondi: fried lamb chops and rabbit with zucchini flowers, each of the meats and flowers coated with a different - and delicious - batter; pork loin and pork liver on spinach with grilled carciofi.

This was all enjoyed with a bottle of good sangiovese and followed with caffe. Was it worth twice as much as our best meal in Lucca? We believe we paid for the creative menu and the lovely presentation.

Reviewed by: Gavin Crawford from Australia, review #527

When: 2002

The perfect combination of food, ambience and service.

There are already two reviews of this restaurant, so I can only confirm that the standard in food, service and ambience is exceptional.

We had lunch on the Wednesday (I worked my way through the saltwater seafood dishes and Ches the freshwater seafood) and then returned for Dinner on the Friday (this time the "game" dishes).

We had two waitresses on the Wednesday lunch. One was a young woman gaining work experience during her summer holidays from "hospitality" college. The service from both was exceptional: Attentive without being obtrusive. The food was among the best we have eaten in Italy, and it was difficult to select from an extensive menu. The vast majority are traditional dishes.

There is a large dining room with two walls of floor to ceiling glass. Beyond the glass are outside tables, screened from the outside world by a high hedge and fence. We ate in the dining room on the Wednesday, with a view of the mountains and hilltop villages above the fence. On the Friday evening, we sat out in the garden under the trees.

The highlight for me was the fritto misto at lunch on the Wednesday. This was about as perfect a fritto misto I could ever imagine. It took all my willpower not to repeat the experience on the Friday, but there were too many "game" dishes to choose from.

This will be the first (or 2nd) restaurant we will return to, when we visit again in 2004.

Reviewed by: David from NY (moderator), review #146

When: 2001

We went to La Mora on the recommendation of 3 different sources and werenít disappointed.

Directions: Near Lucca.

Itís a short drive north from Lucca. Karen from PA had remarked that they were a bit snooty to her party when they first arrived and then warmed up. When we went, the owner and sommelier werenít snooty at all. A couple of the waitresses were a bit brusque, but that didnít bother me. We had their tasting menu (£75,000) consisting of seven courses of traditional local dishes. Delicious olive oil-drenched bruschetta, nice bean soup with farro (spelt), rabbit mousse on salad, roast suckling pig, pidgeon. Dessert was equally good, a nice semifreddo. Wine list was pretty extensive in the Tuscan wine department. We had a mediocre í99 Banti Morellino di Scansano and a delicious í95 Argiano Brunello di Montalcino.

Reviewed by: Karen from PA, review #145

When: 2000

It is a very elegant, rather hushed place, with a beautiful, all-windowed dining terrace. The food is not uppity, though.

Directions: Near Lucca.

Anniversary lunch for 2. They were rather snooty when we arrived until they heard we had a reservation (which they never looked at). Chicken under a brick was perfectly cooked and moist (must try this), antipasto mista della mora is a large selection including fried polenta topped with porcini; the soup with spelt and borlotti beans, and seafood choices are hearty and delicious. The staff had become friendlier towards the end of the meal and gladly gave me a menu (which I always request). $45 pp.

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

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