Roasted octopus in lemon leaf on potato pie with taggiasche olives and pine nuts, Osteria Cantine Cattaneo, Sestri Levante

Osteria Cantine Cattaneo, Sestri Levante, dinner

Menu from a dinner at Osteria Cantine Cattaneo, Sestri Levante:

Small Tataki of red tuna

Roasted octopus in lemon leaf on potato pie with taggiasche olives and pine nuts

Potatoes gnocchetti with red mullet ragu and dehydrated tomato powder

Slice of wild morone on crisp potatoes

[Panna cotta with dulce de leche]

Semifreddo tiramisu

[Petit fours]

Situated in the basement of a farmhouse,┬áCantine Cattaneo is something of a local legend. The place was once the cellars of a noble family’s stately home and now it’s a cosy, upscale place to eat. On the night that I went, the restaurant was very busy, with more guests streaming in over the course of the dinner.

The fact that it’s in a basement is a bit of a let down though – there was a hint of damp in the air and it feels a little stuffy. It just doesn’t immediately feel like an appealing place to have dinner.

But the food was well made and the service was welcoming and friendly. The octopus was particularly good and so was the semifreddo.

We had simple wines but by the looks of the wine cases stacked in the room, they have a very interesting wine list to go with the food.

Qin Xie

Qin Xie is a London based food, wine and travel journalist and trained chef.

When not infiltrating Michelin restaurants as a kitchen tourist, she writes about food, drink and travel. Her work has appeared on Yahoo, FT, The Times and CNN.

Her first cookbook, co-authored with YS Peng at Hunan Restaurant, is out March 2014.

According to friends, her watch is always set to UTC -- ready for the next big adventure. In reality, she is happiest at the dinner table or by the sea.


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