Positano is one of the prettiest places I have ever been to in my life. I was starting to get an aching neck from all the gawking around I was doing! We dropped our bags at our hotel, and headed out for lunch. Compared to the quietness of Vietri, Positano was really a bit shocking. Kids and families scattered all over the small rocky beach. People walking around looking at all the quaint little shops, and full restaurants. Kind of a cross between Rome and Vietri...history, beauty, beach, shopping, and restaurants. We took the first little winding staircase down towards the beach, and ended up at a restaurant called Buca di Bacco. It was just perfect. Right on the beach, overlooking the harbour,full of people, nice big menu...One of the first of the great meals we would experience here in Positano.
We started by ordering a bottle of local vino bianco, Falanghina Taburno. It was crisp and cold, and tasted of all kinds of fruit. The menu was quite extensive, with a definite focus on all local fish and seafood. I decided on 3 items: Fusilli with zucchini flower sauce, a skewer of local fishes, with a mixed salad, and green beans with lemon and olive oil.
My fusilli was handmade, and decidedly elongated. Very clever shape, allowing every nook and cranny to be filled up with the delicious, floral and vegetable, saffron coloured sauce. I had never eaten a zucchini blossom before, so even though everything was quite broken down, and reduced, the flavours were so intense, every time I closed my eyes, I could see the pretty blossom. The pasta was rich, and the whole dish was finished with olive oil and a bit of black pepper. It was really exceptional! The skewer of fishes was a revelation. It contained a pearl onion, a cherry tomato, squid, 2 kinds of white fish, a local prawn, and chunks of zucchini and eggplant. The skewer was lightly grilled, and tasted of the sea AND of the grill. The green beans were so tiny and beautiful, that the olive oil and squeeze of lemon, just managed to brighten an already fantastically fresh taste of summer.
The P-Man ordered a cherry tomato and arugula salad, and tagliatelle with wild boar ragu. I am not sure how it was, because he smacked my hand when I attempted to have a taste! The speed and intensity at which he devoured both items was perhaps an indication of his affection for these dishes.
We finished our wine, and watched the owners of the restaurant having lunch in a small room to our left. It was a family style affair of salad, and bread, and wine, and a whole fish, with an espresso and cake for dessert. It was a sight that we got quite used to seeing in Italy. Whole families dining together, chatting and enjoying simple delicious food.