28 Via San Giovanni del Toro
Tel: 39 089 818 181
Concierge.com's insider take:
The region's grandest dining (and no lunching) takes place at grandissimo hotel Palazzo Sasso, courtesy of young Pugliese chef Pino Lavarra, who took over from the original chef, Antonio Genovese, in 2001. In a low-ceilinged baronial hall that's been slightly Marriott-ized in multiple shades of beige, an army of waiters ferry the food—which turns out to be less alarmingly haute than the ambience, or the menu descriptions, suggest. Lavarra is a little more Slow Food than he used to be, anchoring his creations in locally sourced ingredients such as Cetara anchovies, Cilento mozzarella, and cheeses from Tramonti. This is southern Italian food writ large: basil-flavored chitarrini (a spaghetti variant) wrapped in swordfish carpaccio, or ricciola (amberjack) in anchovy emulsion with artichoke salad. Finish off with a famous decadent grand dessert al cioccolato, and steel yourself for the bill, which is likely to top 100 euros a head even if you go easy on the wine.
Open daily for dinner March through October.