“So what’s the highlight dish in Modena so far?” I ask Mysaucepan, after our third day feasting in this city?
“Well, we tried some excellent aged balsamic and also toured the Ferrari factory this city is so famous for” I reply.
We visit a parmesan cheese factory at the home of Parmigiano-Reggiano in the heart of Emilia Romagna to check out the process of making the “King of cheeses” before heading to Parma for yet another famous food ingredient of this region.
Ristorante La Greppia, Parma, ITALY
We read some excellent reviews about a cosy restaurant that pays homage to fresh local ingredients using French cooking techniques.
Merely a 30-seat restaurant, we manage to get a table for lunch on a quiet weekday.
Bread rolls are warm, crisp and fluffy that goes beautifully with the salted butter.
A 2013 Pio Cesare nebbiolo has subtle hints of strawberries on the nose with a soft and smooth tannins, a beautiful wine either on its own or with a piece of charred smoky beef steak.
Culatello 36 mesi, riccioli di burro
A plate of finely sliced culatello is exactly what we came to this restaurant for.
Cured for 36 months, each slice is impossibly thin and translucent with a delightful ribbon of fat despite a deep-red tinge.
Wrapped with soft butter curls, this slice of ham is an eye-closing moment as it slowly melts away in my mouth.
A glass window allows diners to watch kitchen theatrics and I catch a glimpse of the chef prepping up my main course.
Guanciale di vitello al barbera, polenta al finocchietto
Slow-cooked veal cheek is so tender, the meat falls apart with a gentle yield of my fork.
Full of flavour from the browning process and Barbera wine jus, each mouthful is wholesome with soft and creamy wild fennel-flavoured polenta.
Trancio di ricciola, pomodori confit alla maggiorana, mandorle tostate
Mysaucepan‘s amberjack is beautifully crisp on the skin if a little overcooked though it may be the style of presenting this fish.
Marjoram confit tomatoes and toasted almonds add a tangy twist and nutty texture.
Latte e miele, cialda croccante al polline
Sweet whipped cream with a pollen crispy wafer brings an end to a delightful meal.
La Greppia is on the Michelin guide and so it should.
Technique is distinctively a celebration of French cooking while ingredients pay homage to the rich variety of fresh local vegetables, seafood and meats. Service is attentive, knowledgeable and faultless.
Best of all, prices are so reasonable for this standard of quality, this meal is truly unforgettable for all the right reasons.
Ristorante La Greppia,
Str. G. Garibaldi, 39/A,
43121 Parma, ITALY
Tel: +39 052 123 3686