Corte Mainolda, Mantova Italy
“Unmanicured and full of flavour” is how I would describe the cuisine at Corte Mainolda that turned out to be one of my favourite lunches/dinners throughout our trip. This family run masseria in the Italian countryside is hidden in a wonderfully restored 17th century manner, set in the blissful rural area of Sarginesco. (Read more here)
The cuisine is robust, unpretentious and authentic, simple where all the ingredients speak for themselves. No fuss needed when all the flavours are spot on. The grill is set in the backyard close to the roaming geese that relax in the fields where we were able to talk to grill master and see how he cooked. He let us taste the produce and it was a wonderful experience. The father of the manner cooked in the kitchen and you could feel that presence in his cooking, a style that comes from generations, a talent that stems from the joy of food…very admirable. Everything was so simple, because the local produce is so good, it did not need much more. Mr. N was obsessed with the local Fiorentina steak (see last pictures) a Florentine-Style Steak, that is prominently found on the menus of almost all the restaurants in Northern Italy. The secret of the steak has much to do with the breed of the cattle, Chianina beef and it tastes rich and tender. We will be visiting Corte Mainolda in September again and cannot wait to enjoy more of their delights! All in all, I would call this experience the epiphany of Italian country cuisine!