Saturday is the day we have set aside for adventure and a dinner date. We try to find a new route to an old favorite restaurant, or we try out a place we’ve never visited. This past weekend we did both. We set out on a long drive through the mountains around Watauga Lake with our destination being La Cucina Italian Kitchen in Mountain City.
A stop along the way included the oldest frame house in the state of Tennessee located in the town of Elizabethton.
For the next couple of hours, we explored the winding roads with hairpin turns through the Cherokee National Forest. Motorcycle riders from all over the US travel to Johnson County to ride “The Snake.” The Snake motorcycle trip includes incredible mountain scenery, 489 curves, three mountains, and one vast, beautiful valley in a thirty-three-mile journey. During long ago summers Mr. Mickey and I took the same roads on his Honda Shadow along with other motorcycle riding friends. It is almost as much fun in a Mercedes sedan!
We reached our destination in time for our reservations. We have been planning to visit the La Cucina Italian Kitchen for years, but until now our schedule and an available table never coincided. After hearing so many glowing recommendations from all of our friends who have been there, we suspected we would love this place. We did!
The charming owner, Matteo Torri took a quick break from creating magic in the kitchen to greet us at the door. He and his wife, Graciela live on the property and tend the gardens that supply the flowers on the tables as well as some of the menu items.
Bread made earlier in the day was served while we looked over the expansive menu.
I strongly suspect that these tomatoes and basil were growing in the garden earlier in the day.
My fresh vegetable, shrimp and pasta dish was perfectly prepared. Mr. Mickey’s shrimp alfredo was so delicate and flavorful he didn’t speak after it arrived. It was an absolute delight to enjoy Matteo’s food!
These very pleased people are about to share desserts made from recipes passed down from Matteo’s family. We were so impressed with the other food we had enjoyed; we broke our tradition of sharing only one dessert
If you plan to visit La Cucina, you should know that payment is cash only and it is in a dry county. You may bring a bottle of wine, but they are not allowed to serve you alcohol.
Garden Party lipstick here from Beautycounter matches my Malibu Punch items exactly!
My look for the day included a Malibu Punch tank now on sale here and jacket now on sale here from Chico’s this past spring. The dark wash straight leg jeans were from J.Jill last year. The navy blue espadrille shoes are by Nine West here. Affiliate links in my posts may generate commissions for Susan After 60 Inc. The small summer handbag is now marked down on my shopping site here.