- Food – 5
- Ambience – 4
- Service – 5
- Personal touch – 4
- Over all 4+
We love Marzamemi and in Marzamemi you are spoilt for choice for good places to eat. Most of the restaurants are around the main square and the sea. It gets very busy on Weekends and Peak season summer months so sometimes booking your restaurant will help you get a good place for sure. That’s why we decided to start doing reviews of the places we have tried. Il Borgo is a special place for us and we have been more than once and still believe in our review.
Il Borgo is a restaurant on the outer circle of the square, it is facing the sea and has a large open space in front of it where the kids can roam while we are waiting for the food. The first time we went to Il Borgo, we didn’t know the owners and as usual we were the first to need to eat. They gave us a table on the side and we were happy that the waiter speaks English as the kids were welcomed too. My husband and I speak Italian well but our kids don’t so the fact that the waiter spoke to the kids and gave them their importance was very pleasing.
The second time we went to Il Borgo we booked our place as we knew it would be busy being a weekend. They have a facebook and Instagram page look them up and tell them that we sent you. We were welcomed with smiles from the waiter, owner and even the Chef came out to say “hallo.” This really made us feel like family. Italians have this love in them, if you try to speak to them and get to know them you will win their hearts forever. Try it, Agatha will surely appreciate a word from you.
When we eat out, we want to eat well. Aperitifs, Wine and 3 courses are normal for us so the cost of the meal normally does come over the €150. Yes, the price is not a cheap one but if you want a cheap meal you might miss out on the experience. We do eat cheap on holiday but, at least one meal in a holiday must be special. If we know we are visiting Marzamemi then a visit to Il Borgo is a must and will be our special meal.
Most of the time the owners of Restaurants offer liquors or coffee for free in the end, Il Borgo was no different. The owner actually sat with us the first time we went and drank their own Limoncello with us. Second time round, the restaurant was too busy for them to join us but still offered a glass. This also happened to us in Taormina when we ventured a local restaurant called Tischi Toschi.
Il Borgo’s specialities are their CRUDI, which mean their raw platters. I’m not a big fan of raw food especially fish but my husband loves them and gives Il Borgo Crudi a 5 star. In fact they might not have fresh fish but they will always have Crudi on the menu. The second time we went to il Borgo, the day before was not a good day – the weather was bad. They couldn’t offer us good fresh fish but, they had their magnificent Tuna. It is the softest, tastiest Tuna I have ever tasted. Tuna in Malta is very common and we cook it a lot even at home but, the way Il Borgo make it no one can never beat! It’s so milky that it melts in your mouth and can be cut with your fork. Mmm just thinking about it makes my mouth water.
The menu at Il Borgo is not always the same, the first time we went they had a Panina burger which my eldest son enjoyed with a smile! Second time over Jamie had to act adult like and take a real steak as they had taken the burger off the menu. On the other hand you will always find seafood like calamari and shells, this is my youngest son’s favourite and yes that made him happy! I have two sons with opposite taste buds – one loves fish the other is a meat lover, Il Borgo catered for them both.
Marzamemi is beautiful in the day time, but in the evening it takes a completely different light. The lanterns everywhere, live music from some restaurants and club music from others make the place not so child friendly. But if you are in the mood for a nice cocktail or a glass of bubbly before you put the kids to sleep. Il Borgo has a sister bar/café closer to the sea, actually on the pier and is the perfect place to end your evening.
The only thing that I could criticise about Il Borgo, apart from the fact that it doesn’t have a website, would be the seating. Inside is very small so if you go on a bad weather day there is not much choice of seating. Still the decor is lovely and even the toilet shows their creative flair.
On the outside then the place is open to the elements especially the wind. The second time we went it was quite windy and the table cloths were blowing onto the plates. Even the Umbrellas felt unsafe with the wind yet, if we closed them the sun would be too much. One more thing that bothered me just a bit was the table and chairs. The floor of the piazza is uneven so the tables are uneven too. Probably not much you can do about this but then the chair seats are made from wood or string and when it’s hot it does not feel comfortable on skin. I think some nice cushions would do nicely here.
As you can see, there is not much we can change about Il borgo. A place I would go again and again. They even offered us a place at Emanuele’s Home, close by in Portopalo, if we needed accommodation. So, if any of you people would like a place to stay in that area give them a message and tell them that Little Big Explorers told you about them. Who knows they might even give you a little treat. Contact us for more details on Marzamemi or places to stay in Sicily