Easter lunch at Al Porto Ristorante, Cervia, Italy

Sunday morning, we left Bologna and headed out to the coast. After an hour on the highway, we finally got onto the small roads leading out to the sea… and suddenly we were there. I had found a restaurant on the coast, which looked nicer than the many beach clubs that people were congregating at… and when we showed up, it was packed with large family tables, it’s good that we booked!

And then we started looking at the food that they were bringing out… and began to get excited! There were numerous crudo, pasta and seafood dishes that all looked too amazing to handle!

We started off sharing two appetizers, the red prawn tartare (our favourite, red prawns!) And you know what, it was just okay. They didn’t have tons of taste to them. Also, served with fried garlic chips and endive… it just wasn’t a great dish. So disappointing!

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The mixed crudo dish was better, with salmon, tuna, octopus and a white fish that they told us was similar to seabass. How were they? The white fish was the best, absolutely delicious with a bit of olive oil and lemon juice on it. The rest were fine… I like octopus carpaccio typically, as it has all the different parts to it (like sausage!) and this one delivered. The tuna and salmon were ok, but a bit muted…IMG_6166

And then we waited for our mains (we both ordered pastas). And waited. For about an hour. It was so frustating. They remembered us a few times, said the food was about to come… and it didn’t. It really took another hour for it to come.

But finally did, and we were so happy… I got the squid ink tagliatelle with baby squid, garlic, and bottarga. And you know what? It was tasteless. Not enough garlic to taste it, and hardly any squid… and not enough bottarga to help the dish either. A whole hour of waiting and they did a half-ass job… so disappointing.

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Luckily, Hanna’s was very good. Burrata ravioli topped with a prawn and tomato “sauce”… it was a really nice combo.

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Finally, for dessert, we each had a mini tiramisu. Pretty good, and the perfect size for a sweet treat, without being too much.

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Overall? I really wanted to like this place. But three of the four dishes we had were bland to just okay.. only Hanna’s pasta was very good. All of the other dishes we saw come by looked amazing… so I would probably come back and try again (one day, in Cervia…) but… eh. Still, a nice way to spend Easter day!

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