Flavors of Positano… the vertical citta

Pesce mista at Palazzo Murat

Nestled behind a wrought-iron gate on the lavender ceilinged pathway leading down to the beach is an old world hotel that reminds me of 1940s Hollywood glamour. The Palazzo Murat is truly a sanctuary amidst the beachwear shops and small artisan stores and art galleries of Positano’s main pedestrian area. It is amazing how quiet the courtyard is considering that the busy pathway (packed in the summer months) is just over the stone wall. Situated close enough to the beach that it’s not a hassle to get down there, but far enough away that you are removed from the riff raff and the noise, Murat is a 4 star gem. The staff is warm, welcoming, professional, and classically trained. This is a quiet, sophisticated bunch that choose Murat for their stay in Positano. It is an elegant property. The rooms are large for standard European rooms, and they are, as are the bathrooms, a tad bit dated. The beds are not all that comfortable, but that can be said for most European hotel beds. Breakfast at Murat is typical for southern Italy and beautifully presented in silver platters and bowls.

Morning coffee at Palazzo Murat. Ask for un americano if you are dying for a full cup of coffee. (Frowned upon at all cafes but understood at hotels)

Cereals, cakes, cookies, and all kinds of sweets, as well as dried fruit and fresh seasonal fruit. There are also hot choices as well as a menu.

Dinner at Murat is very special. Sitting outside in their canopied dining area, underneath white lamps and candles and a canopy of vines and lavender, I felt most relaxed.

Steps leading down to the outside dining area at Palazzo Murat

The setting is tres romantic, so yes it would have been that much more enjoyable to be enjoying my pesce mista next to a dashing Italian gentleman, but I am young yet. The service is exceptional, and I was able to watch the chefs in the kitchen just across the courtyard as they prepared the evening’s meals. I finished my dinner off with a chocolate mousse. This is a classic dessert in southern Italy. The south is not known for their pastries, and the palm-sized chocolate mousse is a repeat offender on each restaurant menu. Buyer beware!

Molto sane breakfast

Perfectly al dente spaghetti with mussels and cherry tomatoes… you can taste the sea it’s so fresh!

At the very, very top of Positano, not in the center where the two tabbachi are, but up the road a little bit as if you are going back towards the way you came, is the local’s favorite restaurant. Not all tourists are in the know, but once someone gives them this food-tastic tip, they return day after day, night after night. Decently priced, affordable, homemade, fresher than fresh… C’Era Una Volta is a dream restaurant for anyone’s trip to the Amalfi Coast. I ate many satisfying meals at this small, humble family restaurant on the top of the cliff.

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