Basically ignored by the “great” critics, not considering a quick appearance on Corriere della Sera in a list of wine shops in Lombardy, Tabernario (subtitle “Enoteca delle Alpi” ) is one of the most promising eateries( maybe the only one) in the city center of Sondrio, largest town in the Valtellina wine region, whose offer in this sector didn’t exactly shine in the last few years.
Opened at the end of 2011, the local didn’t find immediately his own identity: the formula is polyvalent ever since, and covers lunch, pre-dinner, dinner and afer… but it’s only when Daniele Pennati, an old acquaintance of my Italian language blog, took over the kitchen, that the gastronomic offer headed toward a precise direction, going away from the simple preparations of the beginning.
The cuisine of the young chef has always been characterized by a strong and original personality, even tricky for the traditionalist local clientele, but the placing in a more informal setting, compared to the ones of the previous experiences, seems today to square the circle.
About ten uncategorized dishes are always on the menu, that you can very often order in half portion (paying something more than half the price) or you can eventually compose your own tasting menu (3 or 4 courses) at a very convenient price, ranging between 20 and 25 euros.
The frequent turnover, surely dictated by the availability of raw ingredients and by the inspiration of the cook, represents the merit and the defect at the same time of this kind of formula: the usual customer will find more choice, but on the other hand the restless research may bring to your mouth some unbalanced bites. The more traditionalist customer can leverage on good choices of cold cuts and cheese, anyway.
The food is paired by a good enologic selection, rightly focused on local productions, to which we have to add several craft beers (including one specially brewed by Revertis) and multiple gins… the perfect way to end your evening.
There are all the elements to recommend the Tabernario at any time of the day (including lunch break), also considering a good value for money and the absence of valid alternatives in the near vicinity.
Prices (October 2016)
Tasting menus: 20-25€
Il Tabernario – Enoteca delle Alpi
Via Zara 2/H
Tel. +39 0342 053040
Closed Monday evening