Monte 2 Torri Gourmet is the latest development by well-established farmhouse restaurant, organic wine estate and b&b agriturismo Monte Due Torri in Rome’s Castelli Romani. Located in Genzano di Roma, to be precise, this elegant rural estate – known as an agriturismo – has offered loyal clients superb dining experiences in recent years in elegantly restored surroundings.
But Monte 2 Torri Gourmet is an out-of-this-world private dining experience from chef Josè Amici, with plenty of wow-factor at the table and on the palate, to make this a truly exciting dinner destination.
Situated in the rustic town of Genzano about 30 km from the centre of Rome, and famous for its flower displays, you need to a car or a driver to access this smart complex, set back from the road in private grounds.
Dinner at Monte 2 Torri Gourmet is in the handsome wine cellar, with a stunning bell-shaped room available for parties of six. This was where we dined and it was a thrill from the first moment, with aromatic dry ice – infused with garden herbs – cascading over the table at the start of the evening to add a punctuation mark which set the tone for the evening ahead.
If you’re picky about the source of your food, you’re in extremely good hands. Monte Due Torri has been producing organic wines for three generations, as well as organic balsamic vinegar and organic wheat, which is used in all the homemade breads, pizza and pasta. However, for the gourmet experience we stopped short of focusing on home-grown wines, allowing the sommelier to take us on a journey of award-winning vintages.
We started however by not straying too far from home – this Bellone Brut is cultivated in the hills above Rome, deriving from a heritage grape, Bellone, which was even mentioned by Pliny. History and culture in a single gulp.
The table setting inspired curiosity and delight. From clockwise, (above and top), an edible canvas inspired by iconic post-war Italian artist Alberto Burri; light rice crackers in the colours of Italy; and savoury fried goodies including a meat-filled doughnut. The homemade bread was served with oil from the Lazio region.
The Lazio theme continued in the next dish, with locally caught river prawns, pictured above. Acid ‘cooked’ in lime, these were served with a traditional Tuscan dish of soaked bread or panzanella, alongside creamy burrata and red pepper salsa. This was a sensational mix of tangy flavours, but remained light and fresh – the perfect appetiser.
We moved on to a homemade pasta course, combining early summer vegetables – peas and broad beans – with pecorino cheese, in an elegant revisitation of classic Roman dish Vignarola. What I loved about this was the portion size and the fresh flavours again which kept me wanting more.
Loyalty to local ingredients continued with this excellent rose from Sergio Mottura, a winemaker in Viterbo, north Lazio. This before we moved on to an oaky red that was perfect with the main course.
Our main dish comprised wood pigeon, cultivated down the road in Genzano, served with a jerusalem artichoke mash and flavoured with coffee. It was an excellent combination of savoury flavours, with the coffee touch reminding diners that this was a fiercely Italian experience.
We we served a palate cleansing light fruit sorbet, before moving onto an incredible dessert. This white chocolate ball (coloured green, just for fun) contained a mousse of citrus fruits, apricot and dark chocolate in a sensational blend of flavours. As this Instagram video shows, getting into it was half the fun:
We hadn’t quite finished all the wine, so happily, there were excellent petit fours to complete the dining experience.
Dining at Monte 2 Torri Gourmet was definitely an experience I won’t forget in a hurry. Apart from the exceptional cuisine, visiting the place was a real treat and the recently refurbished dining area was absolutely stunning. Try and book the bell-shaped room if you can.
Overall, highly recommended for occasion and private dining, distinguished by flair and the capacity to make you feel like a VIP all night. Private dining experiences start at €90 per head, which, for this kind of quality and experience, is extremely good value.
Even better, rooms are available in the agriturismo, so if you don’t want to stroll too far afterwards, that’s always an option.
Testaccina was a guest of Monte 2 Torri Gourmet
Monte due Torri | Via Monte Giove, 77 | 00045 | Genzano di Roma | Tel +39 06 9363276