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Europe Travel Guide, maybe the best restaurant in Italy - Redibis

Written by Trekki on Aug 29, 2008
Maybe the best restaurant in Italy - Redibis

So how did I discover this maybe best restaurant of Italy or even Europe? Once again I would like to thank British journalist Patricia Clough, who wrote the book Gebrauchsanweisung Umbrien in this special series of "operating instruction" book series of German Pieper Publishing. In one chapter she wrote about the Slow Food movement and mentions that Filippo Artioli , the young chef of Redibis in Bevagna, collects all he wants to use for the evenings' dishes in the surrounding meadows and forests. I was thrilled to see that Bevagna is not far away from where I wanted to base myself during the second half of my trip and as soon as I was there (in Poggio dei Pettirossi - see accommodation), I set out to find Redibis. This wasn't easy, as it is tucked away in a side street, but near Hotel L'Orto degli Angeli as I realised then.
As usual in Italy, the earliest time to book a table is 8 p.m. I arrived early and was seated in the nice and cosy reception room (photo 2). The waiter brought me a glass of prosecco and the menu (in English) and explained me the possibilities: vegetable or meat menu or a la carte. As so often in excellent restaurants they "only" had a maximum of 5 selections per course, which means that everything is freshly made. After I had selected my choices, I was lead into the restaurant only to stand there with open mouth. It is one thing to read about this restaurant being located in a wing of the old Roman theatre (built by Emperor Trajanus in 1st century AD), but to see it with my own eyes was most amazing! My main photo does not do justice but maybe it gives a roungh idea. The room is following the half-round shape of the former colonnades and is very sparesely decorated. Only simple tables and chairs, a wine tray and a tabel with flowers are lined up along the walls. The kitchen is separated from the dining area only by a huge opening in the wall, so that we can watch the cooks at work. Good news for smokers: although there is a smoking ban in Italy as well, the huge fireplace has a small bench and smokers are allowed to perform their habit in there.

And now the dishes... Oh my, I still could easily fall into ectasies when I look at the photos and remember these.... As Patricia Clough mentioned that saffron was recultivated near Perugia as part of the Slow Food movement, I have decided for a saffron dish as a starter (photo 3): it was called eggnogg with green asparagus and saffron, although it was not liquid. It melted on the tongue and again I could taste almost every ingredient. For the very first time I tasted how saffron should taste (so the "saffron" I had before back at home must have been some weird blend) and since then I also refused to follow the white asparagus hype in the area where I live. This tiny soft and tasty green asparagus just cannot be beaten! Next came my gnocchi, very freshly made and soo delicious and soft in their tomato and garlic sauce (photo 4). My main dish (photo 5) was again beef in this glorious Sagrantino (famous local red wine) with red onions of Cannara (another rescued species; Cannara is a small village north of Bevagna). Sagrantino sauce is popular to accompany meat in Umbria, but I found that the taste depends very much on how thick and heavy they prepare it. The thicker it was, the less good it tasted in my opinion. This one was very light (despite the dark colour), so my stomach didn't have any problems afterward. Oh, and this little cream coloured something hidden behind the dill leaf is a tiny cake made of spelt. In between the dishes we all got little surprises from the kitchen.
I didn't finished with desert but simply with caffé. But next time I'll chose of the very delicious looking options which they were showing us on a trolley.

Favorite Dish:
Please make sure to read Redibis' website. It was made with devotion not only for the restaurant, but also for the location, the history and the people of Redibis. My waiter gave me a leaflet with the story of the restaurant and it also told a little story of Stichus, a Roman actor of the past days, who gave a performance in this theatre. It was very moving to read this - I could almost hear applause and laughing while I was sitting in this former theatre colonnade. You can find this story also on the website (location -> Stichus).

All in all I paid 50 € for my meal, including a glass of Sagrantino wine, the caffè and tip.

English spoken and English menu available.



  • Europe Travel Guide
  • Dott. Ingrid, Trekki
  • Redibis Dining Area

2008 | Condividi

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