Discover the incredible culinary scene of Salento with this brief selection of quality restaurants and typical trattorias where good cuisine and sense of hospitality come at good value for money
***** Check the SF’s gourmet guide to Lecce Town *****
Eatery with seaview in the town of Tircase serving everything fish and seafood with a contemporary twist. The way fish comes displayed is already spectacular, but the whole dining here is a serious journey. The rooftop has been converted into a gourmet pizzeria with suggestive sea-view, with wood owen delivering amazing bread too. La taverna has just entered the prestigious Slow Food Italy 2023 guide, an ultimate warranty of uncompromised quality.
IL DIAVOLICCHIO | Otranto
Quality, beauty and style come all together in one place at “the gluttonous devil”, Otranto’s unrivaled countryside eatery. Popular among the local jet-set and international celebrities, it is fully worth the bit higher prices because, overall, it is another level.
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PUNTARENAS | Roca
Open may to october, this restaurant & small beachclub is all the way by the sea. I really mean it. Informal at lunch and bit more sophisticated at dinner -don’t worry it’s nothing fancy- the atmosphere is pleasant and the food traditional: you do really feel the sea with their mouth watering seafood plates that always come in abundant portions – one primo piatto easily does for two. Sometimes In high season service might result a bit confused, but it’s ok still, be armed with a bit of patience eventually and you’ll be super-fine
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LA BITTA | Gallipoli
Gallipoli is Salento’s former capital of Seafood, which is generally good but only a few really serve real fresh stuff. Well, this is one of them. A recent discover for me too, here i found a good compromise between old school and contemporary cuisine, prompt service, a notable and well presented wine list and lots of interesting champagne. The decor is captivating too. You won’t go wrong here.
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LILITH | Vernole
A family business since over 20 years, Lilith is a dynamic mixture of authenticity, research and hospitality aimed to offer their guests a journey of strong connection with the land. More than merely a restaurant, Lilith is a laboratory where they experiment with new dishes, patisserie and a wide range of organic goods. Not formerly a fine dining but in fact it really is, without killing your wallet. A member of the Slow Food Italy network
VEGAN @ Samhadi | Zollino
Formally a yoga retreat, Samhadi is popular among a mostly international clientele loving its transcendental atmosphere… and well, the food, which is expressly macrobiotic (and when they say macrobiotic they get down to it seriously!). Some world famous chefs have regular residences here, yet the local cooks obviously have a certain knowledge of the local plants for they really know what to do with the generous harvest that they pick up daily. Serious super food-people, Samadhi is the place for you
IL FOLLARO | Giuggianello
Not far from Otranto, this restaurant & bar isquite interesting. Even though they stick to simplicity their cuisine is nothing obvious, as it blends land & sea into what turns to be a new experience everyday. Set at a wonderful location on top of a hill, in summer the large garden becomes a cool bar with good drinks and dj’s till late
VEGAN @ Piccapane
This 100% bio-agriturismo is way more than just a common farming company, it represents a spark of vitality and a hub for people and projects to develop new and positive ideas. The owners define themselves as “farmers, cooks, and artisans with the mission of balancing their vital time to nature”. On this premise they have built this 100% eco-friendly structure, which is a must in Salento for those into sustainable plant based cuisine, which here fully expresses the spirit of the Pugliese farming heritage