This charming family-run restaurant–one of the best restaurants in Punta del Diablo– opens year round to serve home-made pasta and the freshest local seafood.
Il Tano is set in pine forest a few minutes walk from the ocean with a deck lit with candles in the evening. Run by Argentinian chef Luciano and his Montevidean partner Ximena in hippie-chic Punta del Diablo since 2009, Il Tano is a gorgeous wooden house which is home to the couple and their three children and dogs.
Their specialities are home-made pastas and seafood. Check out the deep-fried crab croquettes made with local crab (croquetas de siri), a traditional Rocha seafood snack in Rocha. The house speciality–and the dish that people come back for again and again–is the fresh seaweed and ricotta cheese raviolis in a creamy prawn sauce (ravioles rellenas de alga y ricotta con salsa de crema y camaron). Rocha is famous for its prawns and Ximena tells us clients describe the dish as ‘an explosion of ocean flavours’.
Luciano’s kitchen garden is at its most glorious during summer and supplies the kitchen with herbs and off-season veggies. When Punta del Diablo returns to its off-season mellow rhythm, Luciano forages for seaweed and mushrooms.
At the same time, as soon as the summer heat cools, the family lights a roaring fire which isn’t put out till the end of spring. At Il Tano, the atmosphere is laid-back. After all, this is a restaurant and a home. What I love is that there always seems to be a little one asleep on the sofa in front of the fire.
What you should know
Open all year round We love Il Tano because it is one of the very few restaurants in Punta del Diablo that serves the public all year round.
Child-friendly Though the restaurant is hippie-chic, it’s also a family home. Children are welcome.
The wine list focuses on good Uruguayan wines Luciano is a trained sommelier and delighted to provide recommendations. The wine cellar has most variety during summer.