While exploring the nuances of the Duomo’s design I happened upon a small restaurant tucked away in a corner of the Cathedral grounds. Trattoria Vinosus has a small, unassuming sign and torn menu advertising it’s creative Umbrian cuisine and outdoor terrace.

After settling in with a bottle of mineral water and a glass of Orvieto I took a brief look at the menu before settling on two dishes that seemed to bring together unusual yet classical elements of the Italian kitchen.  My fist dish was gnocchi with braised tripe and pecorino cheese. The gnocchi were light but chewy and worked as a fine canvass for the slightly chewy, sweet and richly flavored snippets of tripe. Generously topped with pecorino cheese that served as a sharp accent for the warm, earthy flavors of the dish this was a wonderful start to my meal.

My second was rabbit done in the style of porchetta, that is, boned, rolled and tied. The meat was moist and perfumed in a nice reduction sauce. Flavored with olives, this was not quite at the level of the gnocchi, though the execution was excellent, the flavor of the rabbit was somewhat lost in behind those of the olives and the sauce. While I am nit-picking, and enjoyed the dish, I am not sure I would order it again.

Which is not to say I would not return to Vinosus. In fact during my next visit to Orvieto I hope to spend the night and visit Vinosus for dinner, hopefully with friends so we can take advantage of their not inconsequential winelist. I hope there is not going to be a fire in the hearth anytime soon, as I have my eyes of some of the magnums that are currently on display there!

In fact I hope my next visit to Orvieto allows me to spend several days there, taking advantage of all the sights, I simply missed the vast majority of them from all the great Churches and palaces to the mysterious underground caverns and ancient ruins, to the wonderful array of wines, meats, and cheese. Orvieto is wonderful for a day trip, if that’s all the time you can spare, but I really think it deserves a whole lot more.

Did you miss the first articles in this series?

Find them here.

Part One: Arrival and Montalcino

Part Two: Getting settled in Greve

Part Three: Tasting Chianti

Part Four: The Hill Top Village of Montepulciano

Part Five: The Wines of Montepulciano




Part Six: Driving and Dining in Umbria

Part Seven: The Sagrantino of Montefalco - Adanti