Verso: where and why? These are the first questions we ask Giampiero Depalma and Pietro Didio who on 23 December last year decided to merge their specific professional skills and set off together for their “adventure”, that of opening a place that immediately had a lot success thanks to an interesting and quality proposal.
In Conversano the right place is Verso
We are passionate about knowing not only the origin of the name but also how the idea of opening Verso was born. It was Giampiero who told us how it went. “The inspiration came to me at night thinking about what we wanted to propose: a place where the customer chooses the direction in which to go. Verso breakfast, Verso the ice cream, Verso the restaurant, Verso piazza Castello, Verso Conversano”.
In fact, Verso is open continuously from 6am until late in the evening. It starts with a rich breakfast with fresh products prepared both on site and from a local artisan pastry shop, with a wide range of choices not only sweet, but savory, gluten free, lactose-free and vegan.
The aperitif is also very interesting, which enhances the season and can replace the meal by transforming itself into an Apulian brunch – as Giampiero points out – offering stracciatella, capocollo, bread and taralli from Conversano ovens, vegetable flans and veggies chips.
There are no timetables for those who love ice cream: it is prepared daily in the open laboratory in different flavors including six lactose-free and moretti, morettini, spumoni, ice cream cakes and semifreddi are always available.
At any time of the day, you can sip a drink, while at lunch and dinner you can sit down to taste the dishes prepared by the chef. Upstairs, accessed through another entrance, there is the event room available by reservation for small groups.
The terrace takes advantage of the wonderful position in front of the imposing castle of the Acquaviva d’Aragona, with the severe bulk of the Romanesque cathedral on the right side while on the left side the gaze goes as far as the sea.
Inside, an elegant atmosphere of good taste prevails among the few seats gathered gracefully under the stone vaults enhanced by the white walls, but also by the flirtatious touch of a wallpaper with floral motifs. Every detail is taken care of and to be discovered. And a careful eye does not escape the precious craftsmanship with which tables and lamps are made, as well as the choice of tablecloths, plates, glasses, cutlery. All immersed in a sober and elegant atmosphere enhanced by the careful selection of suppliers and raw materials.
Giampiero and Pietro, the hosts, welcome customers with a tone of cordiality that is never intrusive and refined is the creation of Tommaso Netti’s dishes which aim to bring various gastronomic suggestions back into the wake of Apulian typicality. All done with a firm but light hand that, despite the chef’s experience beyond the borders of Puglia, does not deny the identity of belonging.
The high quality level of the products is immediately perceived, as in salted beef prepared with a “special” process by chef Netti. And concreteness and authenticity always emerge, as in the delicious simplicity of the Apulian cacio e pepe with the addition of courgette flowers and anchovies, reminiscent of the years in Rome where he worked in the best hotels and restaurants in the city before returning to Puglia.
You can continues with the second course offering that moves between sea and land with excellent quality fish and meat.
For an adequate choice of wines, craft beers, bubbles and spirits, within a stimulating panorama of wineries and niche products, you rely on the competence and kindness of Pietro, who guides and follows customers also in the tastings in the suggestive underground cellar.
The take away and delivery services are always available and provide for the deliver of complete dinners at the restaurant or comfortably at home. Giampiero personally takes care of catering and banqueting, managing events from A to Z with site visits, definition of the menu, set-ups, service. In this period, besides booking a takeaway dinner or home delivery, it is possible to have lunch at the restaurant from 12.30 to 17.30.
In conclusion, Verso is a decidedly multifunctional and multifaceted place in which thirteen people work alternately and which changes its appearance and its proposals at different times of the day to meet the needs of its large clientele. A model of gastronomic reality projected towards methods typical of large metropolises much more widespread abroad than in Italy.
But we didn’t forget to tell you the story. Giampiero and Pietro have always known each other and they are both originally from Rutigliano but they had never worked together. The proposal to start a business in Conversano was made by Giampiero to Pietro, who after fifteen years of activity abroad as Beverage Manager at Bulgari Hotels and Resorts in Tokyo, was thinking of returning to Italy. But having a family in Japan, the decision to come and live here was neither simple nor immediate. But after just over a year Verso was born and the rest is a story still to be told…
Piazza Castello, 5 – Conversano (Ba)
Info: +39 080 6922753