Tastes of Sappada

Laite and Baita Mondschein, two great restaurants from which to enjoy a trip to the scenic Alpine village

07-03-2014
Snail stock with malga Knödels, one of the many i

Snail stock with malga Knödels, one of the many interesting recipes offered at Roberto Provedani and Fabrizia Meroi at Laite in Sappada (Belluno), tel. +39.0435.469070

In winter, in Sappada it’s hard to get bored. You can stroll down the pretty alpine village, which spreads lengthwise with its typical buildings made with wood and stone, among roofs completely covered in snow and charming balconies. All around, the majestic frame of the snowy mountains, immersed in a solemn and soothing silence, is ready to be admired. All of a sudden, however, everything livens up as skiers appear on the mountains and the tourists who don’t ski, can have lunch or dinner in a gastronomically very interesting restaurant after their walk.

We’re referring to restaurant Laite, in one of the quarters forming Sappada. To be precise, it is located in an ancient, renovated, house, with windows overlooking the valley, an inviting stove in the middle, and a choice of glasses and linen so big it is easy to understand that over here, the rite of eating and drinking well is religiously respected. This is also confirmed by patron Roberto Provedani, who recalls a gentleman of the past and knows how to competently recommend the wines to be matched with the prodigious dishes prepared by his wife Fabrizia Meroi, who never messes up or adds an ingredient too many.

Baita Mondschein, tradizional food in Sappada (Belluno), +39.0435.469585 and +39.347.2600424 (photo by perdipiave.com)

Baita Mondschein, tradizional food in Sappada (Belluno), +39.0435.469585 and +39.347.2600424 (photo by perdipiave.com)

Given the elegant presentation, the winter starter – Pork lonza, chopped Jerusalem artichoke, porcini ice-cream, sour ricotta sauce and broccoli sauce – is a figurative art masterpiece on top of being a culinary one. Following this, the homemade Fresh pasta filled with savoury Carnia cheese with onion seeds and dried apples are a refined expression of the territory; the same goes for the (24-hour-long) Marinated donkey with fruit and vegetables: an explosion of aromas for a meat that sweetly melts in the mouth.

Sappada however is a more sporty than mundane centre, and for skiers who aren’t prone to leave the slopes, right beside the tracks for beginners, there’s restaurant Baita Mondschein, run by good and dynamic Paolo Kratter. Warm and informal, the rooms and the atmosphere could not be more typical, in total harmony with the spirit of these places. The welcoming dining room is also typical: here the rustic style is matched with elegance and a careful attention to detail.

Sappada, 1,245 m above sea level, on the border between Veneto, Friuli Venezia Giulia and Carinthia (Austria)

Sappada, 1,245 m above sea level, on the border between Veneto, Friuli Venezia Giulia and Carinthia (Austria)

Marco Darin’s dishes are also very well-finished, always finely executed and researched, though they do not lack a remarkable essentiality. The harmony of flavours in the delicious Milk polentina with sour ricotta cream and tarragon with radicchio and guanciale is a worthy prelude to dishes that gracefully play with contrasts and sweet and sour notes. From Risotto with porcini served with a blueberry sauce, to the very delicate ravioli with honey and gorgonzola sauce. While in this case the sweetness of the honey softens the power of the gorgonzola, in the Beef tartare the mountain radicchio and the Balsamic Vinegar pearls guarantee a very pleasant rather sour nuance to the dish. As an alternative, local traditional classics are also available: polenta with sausage, gnocchi with ragù sauce, and Knödels in stock.


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