Il Canto: An Eclectic Menu in a 14th Century Former Convent
One might expect a restaurant housed in a fourteenth century convent to be traditional. But in the case of Il Canto on the outskirts of Siena, Italy, the ambience is the only old-fashioned aspect-the eclectic menu has earned the eatery a Luxist nomination in the best international fine dining category.
Il Canto is the crown jewel of the hotel La Certosa di Maggiano, which became a part of the prestigious Relais et Chateaux in 1978. The restaurant, whose name means "the song" or "the chant," is currently helmed by chef Paolo Lopriore. Born in Italy and trained in Oslo and Paris, Lopriore has a knack for weaving a world's worth of ingredients into a base of traditional Italian food.
Gallery: Il Canto in Siena, Italy
To that end, Il Canto's menu includes an exotic salad of seaweed, herbs and roots alongside another that embodies the simple philosophy of "less is more"-shrimp scampi dish made primarily of carrot juice and lemon paste culled from the fruits of the hotel's gardens. Desserts offerings include lime tarts, white chocolate truffles, and almond tuile.
The best dessert of all is a night at the 17-room Certosa di Maggiano. Aside from the restaurant, amenities include a swimming pool, a tennis court, a spa, a fitness room, a library, a jogging track, and even a helipad-making it easy for well-heeled guests who'd like to quite literally drop in for dinner.
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