August 20, 2019
Chiavari is my home and I love it in case you haven’t noticed. When I can tear myself away from il lungomare, the promenade by the sea,
I walk into centro storico, city center and explore.
I try new bars for lunch, dinner and aperitivo, and I walk beneath each portico as I wander. One place I have wanted to experience is Luchin, a restaurant around the corner from Piazza Mazzini pictured above. It is always busy, but I finally went early for lunch on a hot, beachy type day and I got in!
Luchin opened their doors in 1907 and much of it is still the same as that day in May. Luchin is an abbreviation for Luca Bonino who, with his wife, Marinin, founded this establishment. They have always featured traditional Ligurian cuisine and are famous for everything from Farinata to Octopus salad. I love them both.
Here’s Farinata, a chickpea flour bread like a thin crepe. It is gluten free and very tasty. I would say the Farinata I had at Luchin was the best I have tasted so far. One plate is enough for two.
Octopus salad is delicious. Don’t be afraid to try it.
Again, it is gluten free and very refreshing on a hot day.
Fried anchovies have become another favorite for me. Again, Luchin excels at this traditional local dish.
I could not eat all this in one sitting. It was necessary to visit twice!
My primo piatto was another traditional dish, homemade pasta with pesto sauce, beans and potatoes.
I think this area of Liguria is the only place you find the beans and potatoes in your pesto.
Another primo piatto you would love is the Pasta with Vongole. I cannot eat shellfish anymore but, if you can, try this dish.
My friend said it was divine.
I could not leave without some dolce, dessert. My Nonna used to make the best cantucci, sliced, twice baked, almond cookies. We used to dunk them in milk. The adults dunked them in Anisette, a licorice liquore. Usually in Italy, cantucci is served with Vin Santo, a sweet wine liquore.
It was very good as was everything I experienced at Luchin, even my waiter.
I have read a couple reviews that were not as pleased with this restaurant as I was. However, they did not order the local cuisine. If you go with the local foods, you can’t go wrong.
Sit inside or outside under the portico. When you visit Chiavari, visit Luchin. If you have a larger group, you definitely need a reservation.
You can also visit their store for take-away items that are top quality.
Check the daily specials on their boards too.
Better yet, let me know when you’re coming. I can arrange a walk through my town with lunch or dinner. Contact me at Marilyn@TakeMeHomeItaly.com.
Luchin Via Bighetti, 53 – 16043 Chiavari (GE)
Ciao for now!
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