Emporio Gastronomico Ristorante (Gastronomic Emporium in English) certainly lives up to it's name in that they offer numerous items on their menu, other than pizza. Their sign boasts "Forno a Legna" (Wood burning oven) which leads one to believe they specialize in pizzas, however their extensive menu has numerous temptations for the palate.
I arrived at 8 PM and the place was practically empty. By 9 PM it was full to capacity...a good sign. One can dine in the main dinning room, outside under a covered deck on Via Avogadro or under the indirectly illuminated portico on Corso Emmanuelle. This evening, I ate under the portico and enjoyed watching pedestrian passerby's as much as they enjoyed trying to see what I had ordered. The environment was peaceful and just right for a solo dining experience. The service was very attentive, even though I was watched the entire meal by the waitress who ensured that I did not escape without paying my bill. At one point, my lap napkin fell to the ground and the waitress quickly replaced it.
The food was very tasty. I started with an antipasto of Lardo (lard), which was served with a small dish of honey and a few greens on the platter. This is the first time I've had lardo served with some of the actual belly meat still attached to the fat. It was great!
I followed this up with a main course of lamb chops, which were slightly over cooked, however, the chef lightly sprinkled them with coarse sea salt which, added a little surprise crunch when chewing the lamb. (I personally like salt...others may find it overbearing.) The plate contained a potato side dish and some greens.
I had the Mille Foglie pastry with Chantilly Cream for dessert. The supposed to be wafer thin pastry was actually thicker and more doughy, however, the dessert tasted okay. All this plus a 1/2 liter of Dolcetto wine, a bottle of water and a glass of grappa cost 50.00 euro.
The owner seemed to be less than attentive than his service staff. While assisting a near-by table, he was asked what was special on the menu for the evening. He asked the waitress for a menu (which the diners already had) and he proceed to recite what was on the menu. Secondly, the owner was nearly run over by tikes on bikes under the portico, for which he utilized foul language to reprimand the small children.
Nevertheless...I enjoyed my meal at Emporio Gastronomico and I will return on my next visit to Turin.