Antica Locanda Di Sesto

Antica Locando di Sesto logo.

Antica Locando di Sesto logo.

In a villa on the outskirts of Lucca, a family owned restaurant lay oozing with hospitality and popularity. 9:00p is the perfect time for a simple, but complex meal by yourself, but I suggest with your family and friends. Established in 1368 and looking as I might imagine it back in the 14th century. The restaurant was a cozy family reunion kind of place with brass pots and pans nailed onto the white and yellow walls with a small gourmet grocery in the front. We were a party of 12 people seated on a long table in a small room that was connected by a warn looking wooden arch. The waitress was a plump rosy cheeked woman who was also the owner. She was cheery and energetic making us all feel a bit better about eating this huge meal. The first of two wines was a 2007 Montecarlo. It was chilled and refreshing making people eager to drink more not noticing the effect of the 12.5% alcohol rising within their moods.

Fresh Pasta.

Fresh Pasta.

The first dish or, might not qualify for a whole dish, was one piece of bread. Normal? I think not. In the home-made and I assume home-invented bread was garlic, herbs, olive oil and that fresh, crispy taste you get when your teeth bite into a good bread. Also included in the unqualified first course was Boroldo Magliato. In different towns you may find other names for this delicacy of pig blood, fat and meat. It may sound strange and inedible, but what have you got to lose to try it? The meat was sliced onto two different plates and then devoured by hungry carnivorous eaters.

Soft talk rebounded across the walls, but no music was played. Tables were covered with a yellow table cloth and draped with a white cloth matching the walls. Another wine, Maolina the house red wine, was placed in front of us. It smelled stale and fruity, but the taste was entirely different. The wine tasted unsophisticated and down to earth which made it addicting. My water glass was speckled with bits of color that looked blown into the glass. As I drank I decided that a trip to the toilets would be a wise idea. Walking and walking up long flights of steps suddenly I was in a whole other environment. There were old ropes and chests with dusty bottles of 1970 wines.

T-Bone steak on the grill.

T-Bone steak on the grill.

The next course arrived. Coming with shaved parmesan cheese it was three different pasta dishes on one plate. Looking welcoming and creative I dig in. First to hit my stomach was a home-made spaghetti with wild asparagus (that I was told were in season) and a light cream sauce. The asparagus were delicate and small, but had a remarkably sour, tangy taste. The creamy sauce the sour asparagus and the fresh pasta made a unique triplet. The next pasta on the plate were balls of doughy goodness. Each one about the size of a small rubber ball and covered with a thin layer of a creamy tomato sauce. The final pasta on the long white plate were the ravioli. Filled with beef and covered with pork they were steaming with inviting smells. The ravioli was home-made and looked it to. Each one was hand crafted then stuffed with beef and drizzled with pork and a simple tomato sauce. The plainness and simplicity shone through all the dishes and placed the dish on the number one best dish list along with many others from our stay in Italy.

The last dish was the meat. We watched as a half a cow was grilled over leaping flames with nothing, but it’s own flavor and luck. When it finally came sizzling and thick we all stared at it with hungry eyes and full bellies. I was served a piece from the rare side and immediately dug in fearing it would burn up. If you want steak cut and chosen from the most experienced meat seller in Italy then this is your heaven. It was something out of a dream. Steak not tough, but soft and tender with artichoke shaved over its crispy shell. Being surrounded by acidic tasting artichoke and the leaves of a turnip, I am happy to say that the steak was at it’s best.


Looking for dessert, but winding up with another dish. This wasn’t right! A platter of fried zucchini, artichoke, rabbit and chicken. Each bite was a burden after eating a huge steak and all the pastas. The fried dishes are supposed to come first. I painfully took and bite and was unimpressed by the fry and the surprise under it. After such delicious dishes this one was no match and looked small and scared sitting there as our last dish.


~ by David Fishman on August 10, 2009.

3 Responses to “Antica Locanda Di Sesto”

  1. David,

    Quite an interesting blog you have. Was happy to find Aurelio included in your food journal and enjoyed the critique. I have enjoyed many a lunch and dinner at the 600 year-old locale having lived up the road for some time.
    Aurelio and I collaborate on cooking classes in California and in Italy and hope to expand the events to other regions.
    Do visit for photos of our lessons and for more info of upcoming events. If you are ever in Southern Cal drop me a line and we can meet for and eat. In the meantime, keep up the wonderful work, very impressive!! andee, traveling native

  2. this i use

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