6 ISSUES FOR £6 Subscribe to Lancashire Life today click here

Restaurant review - Cucina Seventy Three, Whalley

PUBLISHED: 00:00 07 October 2016

Cucina 73 Italian restaurant at Whalley

Cucina 73 Italian restaurant at Whalley

Archant

Mairead Mahon visits a special Italian restaurant in Whalley

Cucina 73 Italian restaurant at Whalley Cucina 73 Italian restaurant at Whalley

Anyone who travels to Italy usually comes back with a tale of a small, family run restaurant that they just happened to stumble across – oh, and it also had the best pasta. Now, travellers to the fashionable Ribble Valley village of Whalley can recount a similar tale.

Cucina Seventy Three is small, perfectly formed, family run and, as for the best pasta-well, that’s official. They won the award for the Best Pasta in the UK at the national English Italian Awards. Situated on the High Street, it is run by brother and sister, Fabio and Raffaella Fiocca. Fabio cooks and Raffaella is front of house.

They make no secret of the fact they have been inspired by their grandparents’ love of food and cooking and share their belief that if it can be made from scratch, then it should be - whether that’s sausages, bread, ice cream and, of course, the famous pasta. The latter is made with Italian eggs but if the ingredients can’t come from Italy, then they mostly come from Lancashire. In fact, it seems it is only the diners that travel miles to get here; which is just what my dining companion and I did on a busy Saturday night.

The restaurant is compact - under 20 tables - although you can dine al fresco on warm summer evenings. There is enough room between each to give a feeling of space and, if you want to whisper sweet nothings, there is no chance of being overheard!

We were immediately and warmly greeted and taken to our table where we had a few minutes to admire the simple and tastefully understated décor. Yes, the copper pans did belong to the grandparents, as did the huge copper jug which had to be given a suitcase all of its own when it came from their house to Whalley.

We were asked if this was our first visit and, as it was, asked if we would like anything on the menu or wine list explaining: that’s how I found out about the Italian eggs! Drinks first though and there is a good choice of Italian aperitifs and soft drinks. A complimentary selection of interesting breads, including aniseed, with dipping oil, was provided while we sipped and made our choices. The menu isn’t mind bogglingly long but everything is home cooked.

I chose bruschetta with tomatoes and basil - simple but delicious. My companion had the slow cooked calamari in a tomato and chilli sauce - dense enough to add masses of flavour, while still allowing the taste of the calamari to settle on the tongue. They do say that a test of any Italian restaurant is its lasagne and it’s always a test I’m happy to indulge in. Here, it is simply labelled Nonno’s Lasagne and the massive portion has got to be one of the best anywhere. My companion had rib eye steak with roasted tomatoes on the vine and roasted new potatoes. It was all cooked perfectly, including the rare to medium steak that could have been cut with a butter knife.

Neither of us could resist the home-made ice cream, which can be served in a warm brioche: an ice cream sandwich: heaven! We had strawberry ice cream and the fruit-packed flavour was wonderfully intense.

The wines served are all Italian and so, throughout the meal, we took advantage of our waiter’s knowledge. We told him about the South American wine we usually drank and he guided us. Anyway, there is the opportunity to sample all wines in a 70ml glass before committing.

We will certainly be committing to our authentic find right here in Whalley.

73 King Street, Whalley, Clitheroe, BB7 9SW T: 01254 822 462 www.cucinaseventythree.com

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Lancashire Life visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Lancashire Life staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Lancashire Life account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from Food & Drink

Yesterday, 00:00

Kara Johnson is following in her dad’s footsteps at one of the county’s legendary food producers. Emma Mayoh reports

Read more
Mon, 17:47

Kids eat free every Sunday from 12 - 2 pm at The Feilden’s Arm Mellor Brook.

Read more
Mon, 17:04

Join The Feilden’s Arms at Mellor Brook for their steak night every Thursday from 5pm.

Read more
Mon, 12:36

Tea for two every Wednesday from 5pm at The Feilden’s Arms Mellor Brook.

Read more
Mon, 11:34

Pie and Pud for just £15 all day every Tuesday.

Read more
Friday, May 18, 2018

Our prestigious Food and Drink Awards return this October, and we want your nominations to help find out who is the cream of the crop.

Read more
Friday, May 18, 2018

We have five copies of The Lakes and Cumbria Cook Book for readers.

Read more
Thursday, May 17, 2018

Afternoon tea has grown in popularity as a summer pastime, here are a selection of some of the best on offer across the North West.

Read more
Thursday, May 17, 2018

20 Stories in Spinningfields is Manchester’s newest restaurant to see and be seen in. Janet Reeder went along to check out what chef Aiden Byrne is up to now.

Read more
Manchester Restaurants Spinningfields
Monday, May 14, 2018

Baristas around the country can’t get enough of a special milk produced on a family-run dairy farm in Farleton. Emma Mayoh reports

Read more
Friday, May 11, 2018

A series of projects looks like turning a very good Lakeland hotel into a great one

Read more
Windermere
Thursday, May 10, 2018

The Cartford Inn chef Chris Bury loves scouring Lancashire’s countryside and coast to find the best foraged food. Emma Mayoh reports.

Read more
Tuesday, May 8, 2018

After more than 30 years Andrew and Belinda Wilkinson are back behind the bar at the Lunesdale Arms. Emma Mayoh reports.

Read more
Pubs and Bars
Friday, May 4, 2018

The Titanic Hotel’s beautiful restaurant Stanley’s Bar and Grill has unveiled its new spring menu and you can expect seasonal produce and spring flavours to suit all palettes

Read more
 
Great British Holidays advert link

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Subscribe or buy a mag today

Local Business Directory

Lancashire's trusted business finder

Job search in your local area



Property Search