It was a sun-filled day as we lunched on Tonino’s canopied terrace, where geranium-filled pots anchored the most unforgettable views. Casual guests at this unexpected visual feast, we gazed insatiably at the vast Val di Chiana, stretched wide and far beneath us while nearby, Cortona rooftops glowed in terracotta warmth.
Mirco, our Maitre d’ guided us through a different kind of feast, one that celebrates the cuisines of both Umbria and Tuscany. We resisted his tempting invitation to try their legendary Antipastissimo, an endless array of both warm and cold antipasti, which can easily serve as a complete meal, especially when accompanied by a hearty Tuscan wine. We opted to try just a “few” of the famed appetizers in order to save room for some pasta. “You won’t be needing a second course,” Mirco warned us, and he was right! Each antipasto was an innovative take on traditional fare, each one presented as artfully as a painting – paper-thin slices of turkey breast and fresh mango arranged like the petals of a flower, fig ice-cream and just-picked figs stuffed with a rose-colored mousse of caprino cheese and prosciutto, garnished with walnuts – refreshing nibbles on a hot afternoon. A chilled Sauvignon Blanc from nearby Cortona vineyards was perfect. We tried two pastas, a whole-wheat flat pasta with eggplant and cherry tomatoes – a substantial dish in both texture and flavor – and then a more delicate pecorino-filled ravioli with cream sauce.
The Accordi family opened Tonino’s in 1963, following more than thirty years of experience in the restaurant business. That experience shows - in the attentive and competent service of its staff, and most importantly, in what issues forth from the kitchen. Whether for a group of friends seeking an unforgettable lunch on the terrace or for a couple seeking a romantic candlelit dinner for two in the refined elegance of the dining room, Tonino’s is the ideal choice. Not surprisingly, Tonino’s is much sought after for catering gala events and wedding receptions. Elegance, flawless service and fine cuisine – ingredients for fifty more years of success! Bravo, Antonio!