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Curious on #2 restaraunt in the world - Osteria Francescana

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Jun 3rd, 2015, 07:46 AM
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Curious on #2 restaraunt in the world - Osteria Francescana

We are heading to Bologna this fall and are considering eating at Osteria Francescana in Modena one night. The restaurant just received the #2 in the world title. Another option we are considering is Amerigo dal 1936. Has anyone eaten at both and any thoughts between the two?

Whil we are big foodies, my concern is we tend to like good, unpretentious food in Italy and we are not sure if Ost. F will be a little fussy (although the "dropped lemon tart" looks amazing). For example, we're not big fans of Cibreo in Florence which some rave about and instead prefer Sostanza. We originally selected Amerigo because of its focus on truffles and we'll be there during the season.

Cost doesn't matter other than we likely won't do both as I love food but the long drawn out meals can get a little tedious in close succession. Appreciate any thoughts between the two.
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Jun 3rd, 2015, 08:14 AM
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It would be fabulous if someone on here had eaten in both but in the meantime I'll give you my take on Osteria Francescana.

We ate there in August and had the most wonderful meal. The famous dish of parmesan done five ways was, according to our 23yo son who has eaten in lots of Michelin places now, the best plate of food he's ever had. One of the dishes was pasta and ragu. I didn't get the feeling that the food was pretentious although the service and ambiance was sadly typical Michelin 3 star. We'd eaten a couple of nights before in Enoteca Pinchiorri in Florence and while the food was not as good the whole atmosphere and service was a bit less formal and a little more jolly than Osteria Francescana, although that was probably due to the copious amount of wine poured.

Totally agree that long drawn out meals can get tedious and so we never book them on successive nights.

For me I couldn't resist the chance of eating in what other chefs/experts judge to be the 2nd best restaurant in the world.


Hope this helps.
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Jun 3rd, 2015, 02:26 PM
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Given the way you describe what you enjoy, I don't think you would like Osteria Francescana one bit. I've not eaten there (although I didn't care for their pretentios bistro, Franceschetta, where I have eaten, although the food was fine). Anyway, Osteria Francescana is one of the most blogged about restaurants in the world, complete with pictures. You can get a very good idea of what you'd be served by doing some googling.

I have eaten in Amerigo dal 1936, and would happily return (and I love their house balsamic vinegar), although I wouldn't make a point of going there unless it wasn't much out of my way. It is a good 40 minutes drive outside of Bologna, and I most certainly would not enjoy driving on those rural roads after dark. There are very charming rooms there where you can spend the night.

Regarding Amerigo's truffle menu, it is tri-seasonal (and perhaps year round), and if you are going in summer, you will get local summer truffles (black). I am not sure they ever have white truffles, since they aren't really local to Emilia-Romagna. And if they did, they would be serving them from Nov-Dec. Just so you know what you'll be getting as a truffle menu.

I hope if you are willing to spend so much time and money in search of good food that you are planning to have lunch at Hosteria Giusti, which is certainly better than Amerigo (as good as Amerigo is). I also think that, absent the truffles, you can probably get as good a meal as Amerigo's at All'Osteria Bottega in Bologna central if you are meat-focused eaters (and it sounds like you are if you like Sostanza).
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Jun 3rd, 2015, 02:27 PM
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Hosteria Giusti is in Modena, and Modena is also worth the trip to go to its historic food market.
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Jun 3rd, 2015, 03:40 PM
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Thanks Sandralist. We likely have to miss Hosteria Giusti as we are actually staying in Bologna and are planning a food tour day and a cooking class (so won't really have lunches free and understand Hosteria is only open for lunch).

If we do Amerigo (which we're leaning towards) we are thinking of hiring a car/driver as we're not going to want to drive after too much food and vino. I am leaning more towards the Amerigo but seems a crime to not hit the #2 restaurant in the world when so closeby.

Regardless of decision, fun choice to wrestle with in planning!!
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Jun 3rd, 2015, 11:35 PM
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I must be a criminal, since eating at Osteria Francescana has never much appealed to me, and I am in Bologna usually six or seven times a year for the past 5 years. Its reasons for being the #2 (it used to be the #1 I think) have nothing to do with deliciousness of food and everything with intellectualizing food and using it as a basis for artistic expression. How one judges that by numerical rankings seems sort of -- well, odd, but bottom line is that if it appeals to you personally, by all means go, but I would not be too swayed by the rankings. Sort of like Oscars. How often do you think that was the best picture you saw?
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Jun 4th, 2015, 04:53 AM
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I am so glad to run across this thread as we will be in Bologna for 3 nights when we first arrive in Italy next fall. I had just read about the Osteria Franciscan and was tempted to try it even though it really doesn't fit into our plans. I will check out All'Osteria Bottega.
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Jun 4th, 2015, 06:46 AM
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If you have Netflix they have a new documentary series called "Chef's Table". One of the shows is about the chef/owner of Osteria Franciscan, Massimoto Bottura.
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Jun 4th, 2015, 06:48 AM
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Oops, misspelled the name of the restaurant. Should be Osteria Francescana.
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Jun 4th, 2015, 07:22 AM
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Thanks and I'll check out the documentary. Sandralist - great summation which is kind of why I'm even debating. We typically like more straightforward food and yet we really enjoyed Alinea in Chicago which sounds a bit similar. I emailed the restaurant to see if there was any ability to do a light all carte lunch as we don't have time for a big lunch but may be able to stop when moving from Bologna to Cortona.

It also seems we could do Ost F by train versus Amerigo it looks like requires a longish taxi ride (since I don't do buses). Silly I know but just don't like them even at home (and I'm sure the cost differential between the two restaurants would more than cover cab fare).
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Jun 4th, 2015, 12:48 PM
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I don't do buses either, and you would certainly not be able to take a bus back from Amerigo. Buses in Italy generally stop running at 8pm between smaller towns and outside of cities. And yes, the cost difference between OF and Amerigo will more than pay for the taxi fare if you choose Amerigo, but it is at least 40 minutes from Bologna center.

I don't know how long you think it takes to eat lunch a Hosteria Giuisti in Modena. I don't think you can eat a shorter lunch at OF in Modena, and you might like Hosteria Giusti a good deal more. If OF replies that they don't do light lunches (maybe the do, I don't know) and steers you instead to Franceschetta 58, I highly recommend you skip it, even if you don't go to Hosteria Giusti instead.

For what it's worth, chef Bottura at Osteria Francescana first name is Massimo -- although I think he would enjoy being known as Massimoto, maybe even Maximomassimomoto!
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Jun 4th, 2015, 01:55 PM
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Having eaten at Alinea I can fairly confidently say that the food at Osteria Francescana is far, far less pretentious - as I said one of the courses on our tasting menu was just pasta and sauce, another was just parmesan, albeit done 5 ways - if you loved Alinea, as we did, you will love Osteria Francescana. And as you've said - why miss out when you are so close.
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Jun 4th, 2015, 02:08 PM
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"For what it's worth, chef Bottura at Osteria Francescana first name is Massimo -- although I think he would enjoy being known as Massimoto, maybe even Maximomassimomoto!"

Sandralist, don't you recognize autocorrect when you see it? I did catch one of them at least.
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Jun 4th, 2015, 03:45 PM
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I wasn't blaming you. I was simply correcting it. I don't think some people would realize it was a mistake.

Funny that your autocorrect instantly converts "Massimo" to "Massimoto". Why? (No, forget it. I'm not really interested.)
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Jun 4th, 2015, 06:18 PM
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If you can figure out autocorrect, more power to you. Every device I use, it's different. If it had changed it to Morimoto that would have made more sense.
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Jun 4th, 2015, 08:29 PM
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I was just looking at OF's website but don't see a lunch menu. Do they use the same menu for both lunch and dinner?
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Jun 7th, 2015, 02:59 PM
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We watched "Chef's Table" on Netflix and really enjoyed the story about Massimo and his family. It made us want to try it even more. We've decided on lunch at Osteria Francescana one day and Dinner at America dal 1934 another day.

The addition of the lunch replaced a cooking class we were going to do. While I love cooking classes in Italy, we've done enough of them that I don't mind skipping that this trip. Thanks again for the advice.
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Jun 7th, 2015, 03:52 PM
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Well am glad you are going. Do come back and let us know how it all went.
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Jun 7th, 2015, 04:20 PM
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Just this weekend the Financial Times had an article about the 50 Best Restaurants list that people might want to read.

It's called "Culinary Lives of the Rich and Irrelevant (The World’s 50 Best Restaurants, once an anti-Michelin upstart, now speaks only to a priest caste)"

I hope it is not behind the paywall.

http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/f27d1...#axzz3cMb1hzww
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Jun 8th, 2015, 01:04 AM
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Sadly it is behind the paywall
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