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“Serendipity brought amazing experience, at a price”
Review of C'era Una Volta

C'era Una Volta
Ranked #24 of 1,153 Restaurants in Nuremberg
Cuisines: Italian
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Reviewed October 22, 2013

This restaurant, with the full name Osteria c'era una Volta, was on a back street in the old town near our apartment. We were tired after a full travel day and decided to eat here since it was so close and we love Italian. The inside was lovely and was filled with lots of happy looking people. When the waiter approached I began to go through my normal routine of explaining my severe allergy to cow milk protein - whey - but sharing that I could have any dairy product from a sheep, goat, or water buffalo. His English was limited so we soon were joined by the owner/chef, who also spoke very little English but was Italian. Once I made the mental switch from broken German to a little less broken Italian we learned that this chef had a set prix menu each evening: he decided what to serve based on what was best at the market that day. And he would willingly adjust my dishes to make certain that no cow dairy was included. We were so tired that we decided to stay and did not ask the price. But we knew it would be more expensive than our normal vacation meal. What followed, with perfect service, was one of the best meals we have ever had anywhere: lox with an amazing lemon balsamic drizzle, ravioli with the creamiest sheep cheese filling, a fork tender veal fillet with fresh wild mushrooms which were in season that week and zucchini, and a chocolate mouse - given to my husband since there was no way to adjust that for my allergy. I could not have eaten another bite anyway, I was so filled with the previous dishes. The suggested wine pairing was perfect. We were prepared when the bill arrived - 99 euros with service, but we did add more. Yes, more than we usually pay, and we had not expected such a special meal on our first night in town after being so tired. By the time we left, we knew we had experienced a special evening. I am amazed by a previous reviewer who complained about the amount of food. Neither of us could finish every course, and the veal fillet was massive and cooked exactly as requested. I believe this restaurant is open only for dinner. A couple was seated next to us and complained when the plan for the dinner was explained to them as they wanted spaghetti They left in a huff and some of the negative reviews may be from those who will not accept the vision of this chef. We adjusted our food budget for the next day and remember with a special fondness the experience at this restaurant.

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4  Thank Ann R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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41 - 45 of 301 reviews

Reviewed March 10, 2013

This is a wonderful place, small and family run. No menu, just dinner for the evening. We have been three times and never had a bad dish. Delicate flavors, just the right amount of food and an excellent dessert. The cook and wait staff make you feel like family when you arrive and are sad to see you go. Father and son in the front of the house, mother running the kitchen. Try it, you will not be disappointed.

2  Thank Matthew B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 27, 2013

We ate dinner in early December at C’era Una Volta (once upon a time), a small restaurant in Johannesgasse, a tiny easy-to-miss street off of Königstrasse. This turned out to be a most unusual, interesting, almost magical experience because of the charming dining room, the wonderful food and the quirkiness of the owner, Francisco. We don’t know whether a written menu or wine list is available in English, but Francisco, who claims to have been born in New York City and adores American film stars and singers, will tell you all you need to know. One caution: he claims to sell only full bottles of wine, and his recommendations start at 60 Euros. However, he has a good Montepulciano for 34 Euros if you probe enough, and we noticed German diners drinking wines by the glass, so don’t be afraid to press. Another caution: we thought we saw credit card logos on the glass of the front door, but he accepted cash only; we spent 130 Euros, including a 10% tip. Be prepared.

The dining room has butter yellow walls, decorated primarily with framed black and white photos of Sinatra, Stallone, Brando, Loren, Pacino, Gandolfini and other actors/singers. There are also lovely white linens, and a liberal sprinkling of silver objects. Most diners were dressed casually.

Before asking the hotel to make us a reservation, we had checked the menu online and walked by to read the posted menu, one of simple pastas and main dishes like osso buco. We should have believed what we read online: the only option in December was a four-course prix fixe dinner. And what a dinner! To start, there was vitello tonnato; the delicate tuna sauce on the cold veal slices was delicious. Some nice peppery arugula was a nice complement to the creaminess of the sauce. The second, pasta course, was two giant mushroom-filled tortellini with a light, foamy butter-yellow cream/cheese sauce. There was a choice of main courses, beef or fish, and we had both: beef filet with cognac sauce or “sea wolf” -Francisco’s translation - which was sole; or Seezunge in German. These were accompanied with roasted zucchini, mini eggplant and potatoes. The only thing less than perfect was the excess of salt on the vegetables. Dessert was tiramisu – not imaginative, but delicious.

We definitely recommend this restaurant and will seek it out again. However, since we did not experience the regular menu, we’d advise you to consult recent TA reviews and your hotel concierge for intel before booking.

3  Thank GHgrrl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 7, 2012

On arrival no one served us until we asked. They offered us to share a table with someone else until we asked to have our own table. They did not change the dirty table cloth until we ask them to. We felt really rushed as the entree came at the same time as our wine, food was very average and nothing special. Atmosphere and service was still great. Although we would not go back...

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7  Thank LillyLouu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 4, 2012

This restaurant was recommended by our hotel, who made the reservation. The food was top quality, but you didn't get much for your money! For children, this restaurant is perhaps not so suited, yet they still enjoyed the food.

The staff were very friendly, and it was nice to try and talk to them in Italian!

Would recommend for adults, looking for high quality food. Danke, Grazie :-)

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Thank jw1601
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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