Sunday, August 14, 2011

Rosticceria Ristorante Vitti (Siena, Italy)

After spending the day in Florence, we were back in Siena for the evening.  R. and I took advantage of the opportunity to do a little shopping at Consorzio Agrario di Siena and soon enough it was time for dinner.  Right across the street from the shop, tucked in between some buildings, we saw this cute little restaurant with outdoor seating, and the menu looks pretty good, so we decided to give it a shot.

Ristorante Vitto in Siena
The quaint Ristorante Vitti in the Medieval town of Siena.

The menu at Rosticceria Ristorante Vitti is quite extensive.  We ordered a Mozzarella e Pomodoro (or Mozzarella and Tomato) to start.  We've noticed that in Italy, mozzarella cheese is often served whole rather than sliced.  This was a great, fresh salad.  And what's not to love about whole mozzarella balls?

Caprese Salad at Ristorante Vitto in Siena
Mozzarella e Pomodoro (7,50 euro)

R. also got the Lasagna al forno for himself, which was very tasty even without being drenched in sauce (something we've also noticed about lasagna in Italy).

Lasagna at Ristorante Vitto in Siena
Lasagna al forno (8,50 euro)

As for me, I wanted to get some veal, seeing that it is the specialty of this region.  Vitti had a large selection of veal prepared in different ways and with different accompaniments which made the choice pretty tough, but I decided to go with a simple Vitella Arrosto (Roasted Veal), which was also done quite well.

Roasted Veal at Ristorante Vitto in Siena
Vitella Arrosto (11,50 euro)

I didn't get a picture of this, but we ordered a 3/4 bottle of house red wine, and I don't know if they heard us wrong, or if "3/4 bottle" means something different in Italy, or if they just accidentally poured too much into the bottle for us, but we got a whole bottle of wine, served in an unlabeled, already-opened container (which seems to be common practice in Italy).  Not only was the wine excellent (this was Tuscany, after all), but when was the last time you paid 9,50 euro (US$13.68) for a bottle of wine at a restaurant?  I love that wine is so inexpensive in Italy.  The abundance of wine at this dinner made for a fun night out for us. :)

Another thing we've noticed about eating out in Italy is that the presentation of the food is sometimes very simple to almost nonexistent.  Our food here (as well as at Enoteca Corsi in Rome and a few other places we visited) came with no garnish or much of an attempt at aesthetics arrangement.  This isn't a complaint, just an observation of differences between Italian dining and American dining.  We think it is because Italian dining generally involves multiple courses which you order a la carte, so there is no need for main courses to come with extra bells and whistles.  I'd also have to wonder how much of this is due to societal demands.  In the US, presentation is a huge aspect of food service at restaurants, and diners want not only their food to taste good but to also look good, thus creating a dining culture that emphasizes aesthetics.  I certainly buy into that myself; as someone who enjoys photographing food, presentation is very important.  That said, I also appreciated the down-to-earthness (is that a word??) of the way in which the Italians serve their food.  Presentation or not, I always enjoy a good meal, like the one we had here at Vitti.

Restaurant info:
Rosticceria Ristorante Vitti
Via dei Montanini, 14, 53100 Siena, Italy
Phone: +39 0577 289291 ‎

View Larger Map