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WINE DINNER: Vino Nobile and Super Tuscans by Avignonesi Tues. 11/6

Please call (512) 349-7667 to reserve. Limited availability.

Top image via the Avignonesi Facebook.

Tuscan food isn’t just landfood: It’s seafood, too!

After he completed culinary school in northern Italy, Siena executive chef Harvey Harris headed straight to Tuscany where he scoured the coast in search of great seafood recipes.

We always tend to think of Tuscany’s cuisine only as land food: bistecca fiorentina (Florentine porterhouse steak), pappardelle al ragù di cinghiale (long broad noodles dressed with slow-cooked wild boar sauce), fried chicken livers, etc.

Chef Harvey’s menu features all of those classics from the region.

But he also loves the bounty of seafood they eat there. And he’s always keen to remind our guests that Tuscany lies on the Mediterranean coast.

Click here for our current menus.

And please call (512) 349-7667 to reserve.

“The food is unparalleled… world-class service…” Recent Google reviews of Siena.

Here are some recent Google reviews for Siena Ristorante Toscana. Thank you, Austinites, for making us your favorite Italian dining destination and Austin’s “most romantic restaurant”!

Looking for an authentic Tuscan experience in Austin? Look no further. From the natural limestone villa that surrounds you as you dine to the world-class service you receive. The food is unparalleled and I can’t think of one thing I’d change. A must for anyone looking to treat themselves and their loved ones.

Adam

Italian food, mmm, so good. I wish there were more places like this around town. Next time I’ll be back with my friends. Prices were fair for the quality of the food. I can see why they have a lot of positive reviews.

Norma

Had the perfect time tonight. It was our anniversary. Our waiter was perfect and did an amazing job. The food an atmosphere was amazing. Perfect night for a romantic night!

Jason

“Our pasta will transport you to Tuscany in a flash!”

Fall is here and that means it’s time for hearty dishes like the Tuscan classic pappardelle al ragù di cinghiale, long broad housemade noodles served with wild boar ragù (above).

In the words of Siena executive chef Harvey Harris, “Our pasta will transport you to Tuscany in a flash!”

Please call (512) 349-7667 to reserve.

Siena executive chef Harvey Harris, a pioneer of authentic Italian cooking in Texas

In 1987, while still living in Houston, Siena executive chef Harvey Harris became the face of the “New Italian” cuisine movement in Texas.

TV shows, radio, newspapers, magazines all featured him.

Jacques Pepin called him a star and Italian food expert and author (the restaurant critic for Esquire at the time) John Mariani said he was “a chef to watch.”

Chef Harvey’s renown as an Italian chef led him back to Austin where restaurateur Reed Clemmons asked him to create the menu for what would become a turning point for the the city’s food lovers: Mezzaluna.

The restaurant had a two-hour wait every night and it drew national attention to the Austin Food scene.

Bobby Flay, Alice Waters, Susan Spicer, Barbara Tropp, Stephen Pyles, Giuliano Hazan, all came to dine at chef Harvey’s table.

He and the restaurant won 13 Austin Chronicle awards, including Best Chef, Best Restaurant, Best Italian and “Best of the Southwest” five years in a row. Chef Harvey also taught cooking classes at Central Market, Breed and Co., and Williams-Sonoma, and he was featured regularly on KXAN morning cooking segments, KLBJ morning radio shows and in Texas Monthly.

In 1998, Siena owner Stan Adams approached chef Harvey about opening a new Tuscan-themed restaurant in Austin. And the rest is history… The Chronicle still refers to Siena as one of the city’s leading “culinary destinations.”

Thank you, Chef Harvey! You are a pioneer of Italian food in the U.S. and one of the best chefs in Texas. We love you and appreciate what you do every day.

Sincerely,

The Siena Ristorante Toscana Staff

SAVE THE DATE: Tuscan wine dinner, Tuesday, Nov. 6, with Avignonesi

SAVE THE DATE: Siena Ristorante Toscana will be hosting a food and wine pairing dinner with renowned Tuscan winery Avignonesi on Tuesday, November 6.

Avignonesi produces some of Italy’s most coveted wines, including Sangiovese (Vino Nobile di Montepulciano), Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Italian wine expert Giuseppe Santarelli will be on hand to talk about the wines and Chef Harvey will be creating a Tuscan menu especially for the occasion (and last we heard, Chef Harvey knows a thing or two about Tuscan cooking!).

Please save the date and check back soon for menu and registration info.

Image via the Avignonesi Facebook.

“Just like in Italy!” Chef Harvey wows guests with his classic Italian touch.

On Monday of this week at the Piedmont Food and Wine Dinner, Siena executive chef Harvey Harris treated a group of lucky guests to one of northern Italy’s most illustrious dishes: Vitello Tonnato (in the photo above), slow-roasted and thinly sliced veal topped with a delicate sauce made of tuna, anchovy, and capers. It’s a classic dish of Piedmont in northwestern Italy where it is typically paired with Barolo and Barbaresco, Italy’s most famous and collectible wines (chef Harvey paired it with Barbaresco that evening).

In attendance that night, there happened to be a noted Texas-based food writer, an expert in Italian gastronomy.

“This is just like in Italy!” he proclaimed joyously at his table. “This dish is extremely hard to execute,” he explained, “and I have never had it this good outside of Italy.”

“Complimenti, chef!” he exclaimed in Italy. “My compliments to the chef!”

Here at Siena Ristorante Toscana, we take great pride in chef Harvey’s authentic Italian cooking. We believe it’s what really sets us apart from the rest and what makes for such a unique dining experience.

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