/Lunch at Il Talucco in Valdengo

Lunch at Il Talucco in Valdengo

Il Talucco

The list of restaurants where I could happily move in next door and be content to eat in every day got a bit longer this week after a visit to Il Talucco. The organic restaurant, which its owners Valentina Aimone and Nico Zara define as “atipico” on their business card, is also a B&B. So the whole moving in next door plan isn’t so impractical.

Il Talucco

Il Talucco is located in Valdengo in northern Piedmont, a short distance from Biella. It occupies part of a retired monastic complex; part of this is dedicated to the restaurant, the rest to the B&B and living quarters of Valentina, Nico and their daughter Francesca. Valentina’s parents also live in the complex.

Il Talucco, peperoni

Il Talucco’s food philosophy is guided by the Kousmine Method, an approach to eating that promotes the nourishing and health promoting function of food. The dishes are a mixture of organic, biodynamic, and healthy ingredients that rely on closely studied sourcing, mainly from small local producers.

Il Talucco, insalata di farro

Lunch started with a tall glass La Farinela’s rice beer, fragrant cumin bread baked by Eugenio Pol, and an assortment of cold antipasti: roasted peppers, couscous, goat cheese with pink peppercorns, spinach salad, beans with carrot and onion, cured olives, spelt salad, eggplant “carpaccio”, raw shrimp with strawberry puree. (I was surprised to find seafood on a table deep in the heart of landlocked Piedmont, but the chef is from northwestern Sardegna, so the shrimp are a nod to his distant origins.

Il Talucco, fritta di verdure (limone, zucca, carcifi, melanzane)

Next came a platter of fried things: lemon, squash, artichokes, and paper thin slices of eggplant. This was seriously one of the best things I have eaten in the past decade. The fried lemon was a revelation and everything was so impossibly light and crispy.

The first course was a dish of home made ravioli stuffed with a mild cheese and vegetable filling. The ravioli were served with sautéed sugar snap peas, scallions, and garlic shoots, and garnished with borage.

The second course was a simple baked lamb shoulder cooked with mirto, a liquor from Sardegna. The lamb was fragrant and sweet, cooked to perfection. Apparently lamb is one of Nico’s strong suits, along with baked suckling pig. The dish was paired with Luigi Castino’s Barbera d’Asti.

Il Talucco, chocolate

Desserts are Valentina’s thing. She is strongly influenced by her mother’s French origins and prepared me a lovely île flottante with crystallized rose petals and served it with a glass of Recioto di Soave. To conclude, cocoa beans and dark chocolate (70 and 100%) and a nip of 20 year old rum.

Testo in italiano.

Via Raffaello Sanzio 31
13855 Valdengo (BI)
Closed Monday & Tuesday

Il Talucco

2016-01-09T13:34:41+00:00 April 29th, 2011|Categories: Culture, Food & Wine, Fried Foods, Meat, Piedmont, Restaurants|13 Comments


  1. […] is dedicated to the restaurant, the rest to the B&B and living quarters of Valentina, … permalink Condividi la […]

  2. Natalie April 30, 2011 at 10:49 am - Reply

    Fried lemon?!

  3. Tom & Ann Connolly April 30, 2011 at 7:44 pm - Reply

    We would like to hope on the next plane and join you.

  4. Mamma Parla May 1, 2011 at 12:08 am - Reply

    Ditto to Tom and Ann! Cant wait to visit Piemonte! Looks like you found some amazing “food finds”. Great job — as always:-)

  5. […] Food Skip to content HomeAboutBookstoreContactMobile AppsPress ← Lunch at Il Talucco in Valdengo May 1, 2011 · 12:35 am ↓ Jump to […]

  6. Kelly May 2, 2011 at 10:20 pm - Reply

    This is the second time today I read about fried lemon. Is this becoming the new thing? It’s on the shrimp burger at the Richard Blais restaurant Flip Burger in Atlanta. Does the lemon flavor come through?

  7. Katie May 2, 2011 at 10:27 pm - Reply

    @Natalie yup. i was shocked. it was the last thing i expected when i bit into it.

    @Tom & Ann how bout the fall? 🙂

    @Mamma Parla ditto!

    @Kelly my mouth just watered reading your comment and thinking about fried lemon. the taste does come through. Im not sure everyone has the knack nico has in the kitchen. his food is so great. i’d love to try the shrimp burger in Atlanta for comparison sake. Have you tried it?

  8. […] The kitchen of this fine dining restaurant is led by 30-year old Luca Zecchin. I first encountered this chef’s baking on easter Monday, when a picnic in the countryside ended with his spectacular colomba. Light, airy, fresh, and fragrant, this typical Easter bread was one of the best things I ate in Piedmont. (It tied with Nico Zara’s frittura di verdure that I had at Il Talucco in Valdengo.) […]

  9. antoine June 18, 2011 at 12:10 pm - Reply

    ciao niko a presto

  10. Sarah May November 3, 2011 at 10:00 pm - Reply

    I have had fried lemon but I cannot recall where. I liked it. but I like all fried food.

  11. s February 3, 2012 at 11:48 pm - Reply

    no fair. why isnt there a photo of the pudding? 🙂 the lamb in mirto sounds divine, what an amazing idea. x s

  12. fabrizio October 8, 2014 at 7:22 pm - Reply

    puntando con il mouse sulla foto 6
    compare la scritta RAVOLI
    invece della voce esatta RAVIOLI

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