Subject: Re: Piemonte
Bill--Unfortunately we did not get to La Contea in Neive but it was on our list of restaurant choices. All the restaurants we went to were terrific but here are the ones we liked more than the others:

--Il Vicoletto and La Libera in Alba--75,000 and 45,000 lire for dinner, respectively. The wine list at Il Vicoletto alone makes the restaurant outstanding plus the service and food are excellent --Locanda nel Borgo Antico in Barolo--80,000 lire for dinner --Belvedere in La Morra--65,000 lire for dinner (even if the food weren't as good as it is, the view of the valley from the restaurant are enough reason to go there). --Osteria Italia in San Rocco Seno d'Elvio--35,000 lire for dinner --Guido in Costiglione D'Asti--120,000 for dinner and worth every lira. This restaurant is exceptional. --Osteria Boccondivino in Bra--40,000 lire for dinner. This is Slow Food's flag ship

Others on our list that we did not get to were La Pergola in Vezza d'Alba, Antine and Rabaya in Barbaresco and Locanda Le Clive in Piobessi D'Alba. Except for the last one these are moderately priced (40-50,000 lire).

All prices above do not include wine. Needless to say the wines at all restaurants are a real treat. We reviewed our list of wine choices with the owner of the restaurants when ordering and often other fine wines were recommended that were less expensive. Naturally if white truffles are added to a course, the price of a meal will be quite expensive. But, tagliolini with butter, sage and shaved truffles transcends its simplicity.

We were not able to get reservations to Cacciatori in Albaretto della Torre even though the manager of our hotel, who knows the owner, tried over and over to make arrangements for us.

Even though I don't have any truffles handy I am now going to the kitchen to cook Spinosi tagliolini which I will flavor with butter and sage. I am fortunate that when I do use butter, I have some in the freezer which comes from Piemonte.