Lucese is a typical country restaurant, about 40 minutes from Lucca. To get there, take the road to Camaiore, turn right towards Gombitelli and drive up the hills for about 20 minutes.

The food is traditional Tuscan, with antipasti, primi, including tagliatelle al cinghiale (pasta with a wild boar sauce) and meat. Nothing fancy, just solid local fare. The house wine is pretty good.

The twist though is that after diner, around 10pm, you can go outside, to the back of the terasse, and soon you will see wild boars coming down the side of the hill! The restaurant people will then give you bread to throw at the boars, which will come as close as 10 feet from you, just outside the little courtyard. Of course there is no fence.

The animals are quite impressive, but they seem to know where to stay and don't seem (too!) threatening. When we asked the cook if the wild boar sauce was made from those boars, he looked horrified. He has names for all of them, and would never harm them. Besides he explained that the meat is very controlled, and he would get a heavy fine if he got caught using meat that did not come from a certified provider.

So we had a good time, especially the kids. You have to keep an eye on the younger ones so they don't get carried away and venture too close to the animals, but all the adults here will keep an eye on them and won't let them go too far.

Taking picture in such low light is a bit challenging, but I found that by uping the ISO to 1600, setting the speed to the slowest reasonable time (1/8) and the aperture to 5.6, and post-processing the color balance, I could get some interesting shots.

Practical information

Address: Via Comunale per il Passo Lucese, 72 - Gombitelli, CAMAIORE
Tel: 0584 97 18 85
closed on Tuesdays

map (zoom to display the road)

posted by michel, 2008-10-16

[Life In Lucca] [Restaurant Review] []


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