Puglia is a magical place. The sun-drenched days, rock-lined roads perfect for biking, blue skies and bluer seas, and vast olive groves make for an amazing holiday location.
What is often overlooked, however, is the cuisine. We all know Italy has amazing food but after having traveled through much of the country, I was surprised to find myself rating Puglia’s cuisine higher than that of other Italian provinces.
In part it is the proximity to local produce. We cycle past olive groves that produce the olive oil used in many dishes. We see farm workers pulling up fresh produce that appears on our dinner plates that evening. And the nearby sea produces a richness of seafood that is a specialty of the area.
This all came together for me at the Trattoria Neuro, a typical Puglian restaurant on the central square of the small town of Polignano a Mare. This is the final night of our Puglia Biking Adventure and the owner of the restaurant seems to have a certain pride in making sure not only that we all don’t leave hungry but that we won’t be hungry for days afterward!
Here is the menu. You might not understand it all but should at least take away that they gave us seven appetizers, five pasta dishes, a main course, plus wine, water, and dessert!
Insalata di mare
Cocktail di gamberi
Pepata di cozze
Crudo e mozzarella di bufala
Capunti agli Scampi e Funghi Porcini
Ravioli Ripieni di Gamberetti e Asparagi
Mezze Lune Ripiene di Ricotta e Spinaci alla Creme di Porcini e Olio Tartufo
Strascinate al Sugo di Speck e Cacio Ricotta
Orecchiette al Sugo con Braciola
Pesce al Forno di Grosse Dimensioni