The Island by Scooter
Small & Local Scauri Town
Dispensa Pantesca, Scauri
Dispensa Pantesca is the more casual sister bar adjoined to La Nicchia, one of the island’s most sought-after restaurants for a reservation. You can usually get a table, or a couple of cushions on the ground, at this low-key bar without booking. With its own food menu as well as the full menu at La Nicchia available to you, find the local specialties and wines dressed up or down here.
We pass Kaya Kaya on our first day on the island and immediately plan to return. Even during the day there’s a whole vibe here, with sun-lovers sprawled on the nearby port’s boat ramp, alternating between swimming and ordering drinks.
When we finally make it here one early evening, we order cocktails made with all the flair by two bartenders in loud hawaiian shirts. We down them listening to a mix of Talking Heads and The Clash amongst an eclectic crowd. It’s not exactly what you’d expect from a tiny, quiet island floating in the Mediterranean but it’s cool and it works.
Il Gelato di Ulisse
This is gelato stepped up a notch, where they do epic brioche ice cream sandwiches, ice cold lemon granitas and gelato with local flavours like basil, caper and chocolate as well as the classics. Eat yours quickly before it melts on the panorama terrace looking over Scauri port.
Our first and last lunch is taken here at La Vela. A good place to try all the local specialties like pantesca salad ( tomatoes, potatoes, red onion, olives, capers, oregano and extra-virgin olive oil) or pesto pantesco (a fresh tomato-based sauce) pasta, and local seafood picked from a platter, cooked simply and well. The restaurant overlooks a popular swimming spot, perfect for pre or post-meal sprawls and swims.
Panificio Marrone Francesco
This local bakery found in the very centre of town is an institution. Some days we encountered a line out the door. The shop is small and hot, churning out giant arancini balls, pizza slices to take to the beach, panini and more. You can take your delicacies outside onto their shaded terrace with panoramas over the sea, get a vending machine coffee to wash it all down.
Check out my Pantelleria map to pin down all the spots featured in the story and more.