Restaurant & Wine Review: Antica Trattoria del Pero d’Oro in Verona

by Ian D’Agata

Antica Trattoria del Pero d’Oro

Via Ponte Pignolo 25

37129 Verona

Tel. +39 045594645

The dishes

Polenta soppressa e formaggio

Gnocchi di patata e formaggio

Ravioli  burro e salvia


The wines

Pieropan 2022 Soave Classico                          90

Fattoria Rivolta 2018 Greco Taburno                    93

Located in the Veronetta, one of the oldest and better-known districts of the city, the Antica Trattoria del Pero d’Oro is located on the ground floor of a palace dating back to the 1400s (as you will find is the case with many other Verona osterie). It is a classic restaurant that provides locals (and a few tourists, though this is mostly a spot for Veronese insiders) with very traditional and well-cooked renditions of Veneto dishes. The ambience is at once old-fashioned and warm, and sitting down at one of the tables in the generally quiet main dining room feels very much like stepping back in time. The Burti family has been in charge since 1986 and has kept the ship steady, never wavering from a cuisine that is true to its roots, based on fresh, and often poor, ingredients but that is also hearty and wholly satisfying. No caviar here, because that’s not really a Veronese food: but if you wat horse meat, a much more typical foodstuff of this part of Veneto, then you’re in luck.

But before anybody reading this starts getting worried, let me assure you, there’s a lot more to the menu at the Antica Trattoria del Pero d’Oro than a type of meat one who hasn’t grown up in Veneto and Italy might not be too comfortable eating. So you can enjoy classic dishes like baccalà alla Vicentina, polenta and soppressa (a local salami), chiodini mushrooms and Monte Veronese (the most famous cow’s milk cheese of this part of Italy), bigoli all’anatra (pasta with duck sauce, tortelli al radicchio rosso (a pasta with a sauce made with the local typically somewhat bitter radicchio), numerous other traditional and seasonal dishes and of course horse meat-based dishes such as tartare and pastissada. At the very least, nobody at your table will risk going hungry, though given that ingredients are sourced as fresh as possible, quantities of each dish made are not large: in other words, best to come to this antica trattoria not too late in the evening, because as the night wears on, many of the dishes become unavailable. And nobody risks going thirsty either: though not large, the wine list is extremely competently drawn up, with no glitzy and often disappointing names to be found but just rock-solid, excellent names such as Pieropan, Prà, Gini, Fongaro, Corte Gardoni, Ottella, Speri, Brigaldara, Tenuta Sant’Antonio and Zymè, for example. Most recently, when I visited the trattoria back in April, we brought a bottle of our own to the restaurant but also bought a bottle off the wine list and all was well (though it’s always best to call ahead and let them know that you intend to do so). I also point out that the restaurant has a good selection of half bottles, so if you don’t feel like downing an Amarone all by yourself, the wine list once again comes to the rescue.

My latest dinner was just what the doctor ordered after a long and tiring day tasting at the Vinitaly fair. The polenta and soppressa was a very accurate representation of the classic dish, with a very high-quality soppressa nicely buffered in its saltiness and fattiness by the grilled polenta sticks. And while the cheese that was also on the plate helped calm one’s hunger pains, it was the touch of acid-spicy jam off in a bowl to the side of the plate that allowed those who like an extra kick in their meal to provide the dish with further lift. Two pasta dishes, the potato gnocchi with cheese and the tortelli burro e salvia (butter and sage) were typical examples of this dining’s spot cuisine: faithful to the original recipes and well-cooked. The tagliata, a pre-sliced steak was also satisfactory and grilled well.

Just like the food, our two wines on the night were spot-on too. The Pieropan 2022 Soave Classico was fresh and juicy, despite the relatively hot year and proved the perfect way to start off dinner and the evening’s conversation. Simple and delicious, but things were kicked into another stratosphere with the Fattoria Rivolta 2018 Greco Taburno, a simple magical wine that showcased well all the qualities Campania’s Greco variety boasts in spades. Golden in colour, thick and chewy in the mouth (Greco is a rare tannic white grape), but very fresh and lively, every sip offered loads of complexity and tropical and od fruit flavours. Beautifully complex and still very young, this was just gorgeous, and big enough to stand up even to the meat dish.

Our dinner at the Antica Trattoria del Pero d’Oro ran smoothly and uneventfully. We all stepped out in the coolish Verona air feeling both satiated and happy, always a good sign when coming out of a restaurant. True, the food may not hit any high notes that make the restaurant a must-go to destination each and every time you visit Verona, but if you are looking for good food at a fair price in a relatively quiet and authentic setting, then this is the place for you.


Ian D'Agata

Editor-in-Chief of Terroir Sense Wine Review
President of Terroir Sense Academy
Vice President of Association Internationale des Terroirs
Chief Scientific Officer of TasteSpirit

Ian D’Agata has been writing and educating about wines for over thirty years. Internationally recognized as an distinguished expert, critic and writer on many wine regions, his two most recent, award winning books Native Wine Grapes of Italy and Italy's Native Wine Grape Terroirs (both published by University of California Press) are widely viewed as the "state of the art" textbooks on the subject. The former book won the Louis Roederer International Wine Awards Book of the Year in 2015 and was ranked as the top wine books of the year for the Los Angeles Times, the Financial Times and the New York Times, while the latter was named among the best wine books of the year by Food & Wine Magazine and the NY Times.

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Ian D'Agata