Is there anyone out there who doesn’t love Italian food? I don’t think so. It is justifiably regarded as one of the worlds’ great cuisines and not a lot of people know that French cuisine — often regarded as representing the pinnacle of gastronomic excellence — actually derives from Italian influences which were introduced into the French Royal Court around the time of the Medici’s. See — you learn something new every time you read this blog!
My last day in Puglia saw me visit the lovely town of Conversano which happens to be the home of one of Discovery Puglia’s two directors, Anita. Discovery Puglia is a relatively new niche tour operator which is located in Dublin but is owned by two wonderful Italians who fell in love with Ireland and have decided to make their home here. Concezio is the other director, and between them, Concezio and Anita put together this most magnificent itinerary in conjunction with the local tourism authorities. They offer a diverse range of holiday options tanging from self-catering and fly-drive right through to escorted tours and luxury masserias. All of their packages can be booked through any of our 60-odd agents located throughout the country. Check the location of your nearest local agent by clicking on the ‘Find-an-agent’ section elsewhere on this website.
Anyway, back to the food for a moment. Lunch had been arranged today at a local restaurant in the picturesque seaside town of Polignano a Mare. As you can imagine, with a job like mine, I get to eat out at a lot of fine restaurants all over the world but I can genuinely say that the meal I had today has to rank in my all-time top ten! There were so many courses that I actually stopped counting but it was the quality and taste that really blew me away! As Michael Winner would say — it was ‘historic’!
The restaurant in question is called La Tana Marina and they specialise in seafood although you can order practically anything you want off the extensive menu. It is also surprisingly large for a restaurant delivering such quality. I would estimate that it caters for up to 200 persons at any one time! If you ever find yourself down that neck of the woods, then you should definitely make a detour for this place. Their telephone number is 080 424 2370
Other memorable meals also had on this trip and which deserve an honourable mention include Masseria Il Frantoio (pictured) where the wine, olive oil, herbs, edible flowers, cheeses and meats were organic and produced on site and Masseria Marzalossa and Masseria San Domenico.