V. Monte Baldo, 28
Costermano (Verona) Veneto
The best of all Lake Garda restaurants is haunted. Nonetheless, if you aren’t scared of ghosts and are looking to eat well,then this is a good choice.
This haunted house turned restaurant dates back to the 18th century, and the ghost has been here even longer, from the 10th century some say.
Legend has it that the ghost is that of the Duke of Prada, a nobleman who met his untimely end in a tragic duel with his best friend. The duel was fought over the love of a woman, as is often the case with these dramatic stories of old. The Duke's spirit has lingered within these ancient walls, adding an air of mystery and intrigue to the dining experience.
Despite the occasional visit by the ghost, the atmosphere at Ristorante La Casa Degli Spiriti is truly marvelous. The setting is absolutely magnificent, offering a breathtaking view across the glistening waters of Lake Garda. As you step into the restaurant, you'll be transported back in time, surrounded by the charm and elegance of centuries past.
Now, you may be wondering, "What about the food?" Fear not, for the culinary delights at this haunted eatery are sure to leave you satisfied. The restaurant prides itself on its seafood and local cuisine, skillfully prepared to tantalize your taste buds. Each dish is a masterpiece, showcasing the flavors and traditions of the region.
The have two options to choose from: the Bistrot, which is called La Terrazza, and the Gourmet version, called La Veranda. We have eaten at both, and the prices are slightly higher in the Gourmet option, but there is very little to choose between them in terms of quality and you'll find some of the signature dishes, like gnocchi, on the menu at both restaurants.
The version of gnocchi I love most is the Gnocchi di patate, fonduta al Monte Veronese e tartufo nero: a mouthwatering dish - absolute heaven. It is a delectable combination of Gnocchi di Patate, Fonduta al Monte Veronese: A rich and creamy cheese fondue made with Monte Veronese cheese and Tartufo Nero.
When these three elements come together, it creates a harmonious and decadent dish.
Other dishes we loved were:
Risotto allo Zafferano con Scampi: A luscious saffron-infused risotto adorned with succulent scampi.
Tagliatelle al Ragu di Cervo: Handmade tagliatelle pasta tossed in a rich and hearty venison ragu. This dish highlights the restaurant's commitment to using quality ingredients and traditional recipes.
Filetto di Manzo con Riduzione di Amarone: Tender beef fillet cooked to perfection and served with a velvety Amarone reduction. The combination of the succulent meat and the rich wine sauce creates a symphony of flavors.
For the more adventurous eaters, There is a dish I tried the first time I ate here and loved. It is the Papardelle, Sir Fredrich, and pays homage to the dramatic history of the Duke and his fateful duel. This delectable pasta dish is prepared with tender donkey meat and enhanced with the earthy aroma of truffles. I took a bit of convincing before I'd try the donkey, but I have to say it was excellent. The only problem is that I have never seen the dish on the menu again after that first visit. I hope they bring it back. If they do, my advice is to try it!
The menu changes all the time, though; everything is seasonal, so don't expect to find the dishes we love, but whatever is on the menu will be excellent, made from local ingredients, and prepared with love and according to tradition.
As you indulge in the culinary delights, you'll find that the service at Ristorante La Casa Degli Spiriti is truly top-notch. The attentive staff caters to your every need, ensuring a memorable dining experience. They are knowledgeable about the menu and can offer recommendations based on your preferences.
To complement your meal, explore the restaurant's extensive wine list, featuring some of the best local vintages from the nearby Soave wine region and elsewhere in the Veneto and beyond. Let the sommelier guide you through the selection, as they share their expertise and passion for the region's wines. Whether you prefer a crisp white wine to accompany your seafood or a bold red to complement the richness of your meal, you'll find a perfect pairing to enhance your dining experience.
Beyond the ghostly tales and exceptional cuisine, this restaurant holds a special place in the hearts of locals and visitors alike. Its history and charm make it a destination not just for a memorable meal, but for an immersive cultural experience. The ambiance, the view, and the flavors all come together to create a truly unforgettable evening.
So, if you're ready to embark on a culinary adventure with a touch of the supernatural, make your way to Ristorante La Casa Degli Spiriti. Explore the rich flavors of Lake Garda, embrace the ghostly presence, and allow yourself to be transported to a world where history and gastronomy intertwine. Immerse yourself in the enchanting atmosphere, savor each bite, and create memories that will linger long after the meal is over.
As you step out of the restaurant, take a moment to appreciate the beauty of Lake Garda, sparkling under the moonlight. Perhaps, just for a moment, you'll catch a glimpse of the Duke's ghostly figure, watching over the place that once held so much passion and turmoil.
And as you leave, filled with culinary delights and enchanted by the experience, you'll carry with you a story to share—a story of a haunted restaurant on the shores of Lake Garda, where history and flavors converge to create a truly unforgettable dining experience.