We were in Falmouth Saturday night on a last minute trip. Our original plan was to visit Anejo, which is a great little Mexican Restaurant downtown, but they don’t take reservations and in the summer of 2021 you better have dinner reservations on a Saturday night.

I started on Opentable and discovered La Cucina Sul Mare (The Kitchen by the Sea). Checked out the menu and reviews and booked it for 6:30.

I’ll be honest with you, my thinking was to head downtown around 6:00, check out the wait at Anejo, and if it wasn’t too long, cancel La Cucina and eat at Anejo!

I’m a bit ashamed of that plan, but Saturday morning our guests told me they’d just had Mexican, so fortunately for me, we discovered La Cucina Sul Mare.

Old World Charm

Despite sitting in the heart of one of Cape Cod’s major villages, I could easily see La Cucina Sul Mare in an urban setting any where in the Western World…

The decor is legit – wood plank ceilings, earth tone plaster walls, a big long bar, and none of the cliche decorations one might find an Italian restaurant trying to look Italian.

The restaurant is coming up on its twenty year anniversary and the owners have a nice back story…

The La Cucina Sul Mare Story

The Food

La Cucina Sul Mare offers a full menu, but it all fits on one large piece of paper.

The Menu at La Cucina Sul Mare

They also offer a decent wine list with a nice variety of by-the-glass options. Mrs. Horne and I have started sharing a bottle at dinner and I was quite pleased to discover Justin Cab for $59…

I was also thrilled to find that they offered both Oysters on The Half Shell ($3) and Oysters Rockefeller ($5) by the oyster.

Oysters of the Half Shell at La Cucina Sul Mare
Oysters Rockefeller at La Cucina Sul Mare

The Rockefeller was a little less cheesy than some I’ve had and the spinach was as much a star of the dish as the oyster.

Of course Mrs. Horne ordered a Caesar…

Caesar Salad at La Cucina Sul Mare

Very well assembled and pleasing to the eye. The homemade dressing was spot on.

Sticking with her Keto plan, Mrs. Horne also ordered the Shrimp Cocktail…

Shrimp Cocktail at La Cucina Sul Mare

Everyone else pretty much went Old School Italian..

Spaghetti at La Cucina Sul Mare
The Meatball at La Cucina Sul Mare
Grilled Swordfish at La Cucina Sul Mare
Chicken Marsala at La Cucina Sul Mare

I ordered the Sweet Sausage with Broccoli Rabe and Rigatoni…

Sausage and Rapina at La Cucina Sul Mare

The presentation was truly impressive and the portion size was almost ridiculous. I’d say this easily could have fed 3 or 4 people.

The sausage was incredible and although I’m not Broccoli Rabe fan, it was quite good.

The rigatoni was good, but needed more seasoning. I had the “Parmesan Boy” come of and grind me some twice. If I were preparing this dish, I would have added grated parm, red peppers, lemon juice, and minced garlic to rigatoni, but that’s just me.

Mrs. Horne gave me a little help consuming this Italian feast, but the pan was still half full when I told our server we didn’t want a to-go box.

Although my original motive was to selfishly use my reservation at La Cucina Sul Mare as a backup for Anejo, I ended up discovering a great restaurant that’s a perfect alternative to the traditional seafood restaurants you find on the Cape. I will be back…