Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Eating from the sea

Palermo, May 12—
WHAT A WONDERFUL PLACE, I said to Lindsey, And the interesting thing is that it's just an ordinary place, and so it is. But it's on the waterfront, almost, across the boulevard from the sea, and it serves, what else, fish. You see the fish laid out on plates, on ice of course, on a table, as you walk to a table — they're all outside — and then you watch as Francesco cooks them on a portable grill out in front of the tables.

We decided to take our principal meal at midday today, and so I ordered a plate of eggplant alla parmagiana and a primo of bucatini con sarde, a traditional dish here which must consist of sardines, currants, onion, fennel, and pine nuts, all cooked up into a thick sauce. (Some add saffron, but that would be Sard, I think, not Sicilian.)

Afterward we each had a grilled swordfish steak, dressed with oil and lemon and sprinkled with lots of parsley. What more could you want?
Bianco d'Alcamo, "Vini del Golfo," 2009
  • Trattoria del Pesce Fresco, Foro Italico Umberto, Palermo

    tourist said...

    Very bad service. Menu of 20 euros. We never got desert nor coffee, although we had to pay the full amount. Not tourist friendly, local people are a lot better serviced. Review from Belgian couple referring to lunch on Sunday, July 7, 2011

    Charles Shere said...

    Although it's anonymous, I post "tourist"'s comment in order to comment on it. €20 does not seem expensive to me for a Sunday "lunch." And the complaint about "not tourist friendly" raises questions. In our experience the staff was quite friendly, and we were certainly tourists, speaking very imperfect Italian. Casual restaurants in Italy tend to be busy at midday on Sundays: that's a traditional time for large parties and family gatherings, and you can be sure such a group will focus the staff's attentiveness. I'd have lingered over my "lunch" long enough to enjoy the scene, and to get my dessert and coffee…