Rating: 7 / 10
Following in the steps of Stanley Tucci, we headed for a daytrip to Ischia with only one plan: To eat at Il Foccolare.
Well, we didn't.
Our ferry arrived at Porto and after a ludicrous offer from a taxi we took the bus to Casamicciola to await a further mini-bus up the hill. Standing on the side of the street as the sky threw up morbid shades, we twiddled our thumbs in anticipation of a downpour. Half an hour passed. Time was of the essence since restaurants in Italy always close during the afternoon. A taxi driver had been spying us for a while and decided to make his move. After some negotiations we agreed and off we went hurtling into the mountains.
As luck would have it the restaurant was full and took no further guests. Crestfallen and shaken to the very core of our being, we started the long walk back down the hill, shaking our heads in frustration. Hunger was the overriding emotion and turning a corner we spotted Antica Fornace and decided to give it a go.
Despite the unduly slow service, the meal was pretty damn good. My pasta with wild boar was delicious and perhaps the best version of the three I tried in Italy. My collegue ordered steak of which I snuck a bite, it was charred to perfection and succulent.
If, by any roll of the dice you happen to be in the same situation as us, then I can highly recommend this as a back-up to Foccolare.
These recommendations are just personal opinions based on my palate, things change, chefs get fired or replaced, places open-close, relocate, so take it all with a pinch of MSG and discover your own gems too. But please do try a few of these, they have been researched exhaustively.
"Tastes are subjective, so take everything with a pinch of salty tears"