I'm indebted to VinoRoma, without whose help I never would have visited Senigallia. I'd never visited LeMarche in many previous trips to Italy and don't think I'd ever heard of Senigallia until reading VinoRoma's superb series of posts on eating in this Adriatic Sea town. My desire to visit was enhanced by reading the reports of Rrems, whose visit prreceeded ours by just a few weeks, I believe.
It did not take long after arrival that Senigallia joined my (by now very long and spanning several countries on a couple of continents) list of places I'd like to spend a few months: Wide sandy beach, handsome architecture in a tightly knot historic center, few (none that we met) English-speaking tourists, delightfully welcoming townspeople and, of course, wonderful food at various price points.
I'll back up a moment to report on a terrific lunch that we enjoyed en route to Senigallia from Norcia.
Leaving Norcia in the morning, we made a stop near Spoleto outside the town of Campello Sul Clitunno, which had been recommended by our hotel as a mill which was selling oils from the 2018 harvest, which was then ongoing. We visited three frantoios during our trip and this one appeared to be the most traditional, family owned and run for generations and still using the original machinery to press the fruit.
I bought two liters of their oil for about 10 euro per metal container, along with a jar of black olive paste and a bag of cicerchie, an heirloom variety of chickpeas still grown in Umbria, Le Marche and enjoying protected status under the arc of the Slow Food Foundation. I'd buy a few more bags before the trip was over and have already used a fair amount of this grassy, crisp legume that I had first tasted in Puglia years ago. (I use them as a base for soups).
By the time we left the mill, the weather had turned so we had to press on, without stops, to our designated lunch destination, DA GUSTIN, in Bargni di Serrungarina, not far from Urbino. To put it bluntly with an overworked descriptor, this place is a gem! Tucked into the ground floor of one of several buildings that comprise the "diffuse" B&B and nearby Osteria with its 8 or so tables presided over with smiles by Virginio and Catia Baldelli, the cozy space looks lifted from a movie set: Wood beams, legs of ham, hunks of cheese, strings of garlic and peppers......all the quinessential elemtns come together in a way that spells homey charm rather than tourist-orient tack. There are tables on the piazza outside but they were not being used that dour day. Virginio recites the daily menu, with about 5 choices for each course. Each and every one sounded tempting. Neither of us could resist a pasta course, mine with shaved white truffles from Umbria, asparagus (in season in fall??) and pumpkin, the other with garbanzos.
I followed by grilled lamb, shared by the partner. Quite excellent! You can taste the sweetness of the lam here, and the plentiful herbs and salt that finished the roast meat. I will attempt to add some photos.
Our bill for lunch with white wine and water (the dessert was made in house and looked phenomenal but we just could not..), was 66 euro.
We rarely left tips at restaurants on this trip (see long CH discussion on this subject in the fairly recent past, probably on the Spain board) but we were generous as we were so enamored by the entire experience.
From DA GUSTIN, we continued our route into Senigallia, arriving in good spirits despite the twists and turns delays forced by road contruction nearing the Adriatic coast.
Supremely thankful that our car had a GPS, we arrived in Senegallia in good spirits and quickly found what would be our beach-front home for the next four nights, Terrazza Marconi, a swanky modern hostelry complete with sea-facing terrace and free parking just outside.
Superb noodles with white truffles, pumpkin, asparagus
Lamb Chops with potato....smashingly excellent
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