Holding down one corner of the Santa Caterina market, La Torna is a bakery (great breads, by the way) with a dining counter circling a bar/kitchen. The two dozen people who score seats get a certain amount of theater (two waitresses and two cooks operating in an area the size of a large closet) and terrific market food. Given the restrictions, the food tends to be simple—almost everything is cooked on a griddle or seared under a broiler. But the ingredients are super-fresh, since the vendors are only steps away. During the summer, sautéed zucchini flowers stuffed with salt cod brandade are a specialty, as are grilled or sautéed mixed wild mushrooms. The pork and veal meatballs with mushrooms are a dependable standby in any season, as are the sweet and tender squid grilled and dressed with Catalan olive oil. The bakery does breakfast pastry as well as bread, so many market workers come here for coffee, a croissant, and a big glass of freshly squeezed juice from Spain's blood oranges.
- Frommer's Staff