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Puny, Portofino

5 Piazza Martiri dell'Olivetta
Italy 16034
Tel: 39 01 8526 9037's insider take:

If you want to hang with the Portofino smart set, book a table chez Puny, the most classic and chichi of the harborside restaurants, with its refined marine decor (including a cool raffia-seated version of Gio Ponti's iconic Superleggera chair). You probably won't recognize most of the VIPs who pack in here on summer evenings, as few of these captains of industry, Roman aristos, and small-time Milanese TV celebs have achieved international fame, but the people-we-know vibe is unmistakable and makes for an entertaining meal. As for the food, it's standard Ligurian fishy fare; competent but unchallenging. On our last visit, the warm octopus and artichoke salad was good, fresh, and herby, but the main-course gilthead bream baked with potatoes and olives was rather too doused in oil. Still, the faithful, well-heeled clientele comes here for '60s-style comfort food, not nouvelle cuisine. And the lemon and wild strawberry sorbet is delicious. Book well ahead or trust in fate: There are times when even the concierge at the Splendido can't guarantee you a table.

Open Fridays through Wednesdays 12:30 to 2 pm and 7:30 to 10:30 pm.

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