Seafood, Sicily, summertime…jackpot! I’ve been living in Rome for 4+ years and it’s become increasingly difficult to find a meal that brings joyous tears to my eyes. I knew there was a good chance that I’d find what I was looking for in Sicily.
During a road trip in July along the east coast of Sicily, we stopped in Catania for lunch at Antica Marina Osteria. This friendly and casual local owned by Maurizio Scorza, Giovanni Leonardi and Campisi Salvatore serves seafood dishes in an intimate space tucked away on the la pescheria di Catania (Catania fish market).
We started with an assortment of seafood antipasti for which the restaurant is well known. Eight white ceramic bowls arrived at our table brimming with delicacies from lightly fried cuttlefish to tuna, zucchini and roasted cherry tomatoes tossed in local olive oil.
Mussels stuffed with breadcrumbs and parsley were a great contrast to the zing of thinly sliced salmon with chili pepper and mushrooms.
Tender octopus salad and shrimp prepared like ceviche were two of my favorite dishes. The small shrimp were sweet and delicate served in a marinade of tangy lemon juice, parsley and olive oil.
The starters were followed by tagliolini ai ricci di mare (pasta with sea urchin sauce) and tagliolini ai cozze ed alga (pasta with mussels and seaweed). The velvety orange specks of sea urchin transported me back to my Sicilian grandmother Maria’s kitchen table. I closed my eyes as it dissolved into a buttery broth on my tongue…pure bliss.
We chose ricotta cake for dessert. The creamy and luscious cheese was encrusted by sweet toasted almonds and dark chocolate bits and topped off with a sprinkle of powdered sugar…a dream ending to a heavenly meal.
Antica Marina’s fresh ingredients, enticing specialities and welcoming atmosphere make this a not-to-miss destination for seafood lovers.
Antica Marina Osteria
via Pardo, 29 – Catania
Tel. +39 095 348197