17th August 2014 Lined up on the dockside in the port of Livorno, opposite the landmark statue of the Four Moors, at first glance the Ca' Moro may look like just another fishing boat. As you stroll past the gangway, however, it soon becomes clear that this particular peschereccio has been converted into a cheerful seafood restaurant with a fittingly maritime blue and white colour scheme.
In fact, the Ca' Moro 'Social Bateau' is the latest success story for the Parco del Mulino social cooperative, an organisation founded by doctor Daniele Tornar and his wife Emanuela in 2007 in order to protect the rights of people with Down syndrome and to help to get them integrated into the world of work.
This, then, is much more than just a restaurant: besides offering a unique new dining experience for local inhabitants and visitors to Livorno, the Ca' Moro restaurant also provides work for six people with Down syndrome. Davide, Gianni, Giorgio, Paolo and Valentina, backed by a team of professional kitchen and restaurant staff, take it in turns to work as waiters and barstaff in this unique location in the heart of Livorno. Each of them has followed training courses in restaurant work at the Parco del Mulino, and in some cases at the hotel training school in Rosignano. On Wednesday evenings they are joined by pianist Michele who entertains diners with his musical repertoire. They are enthusiastic and hard-working, and keen to show the world what they can achieve. The project allows them to gain confidence, independence and maturity.
The Ca' Moro restaurant is run by Marco Paoletti, president of the Parco del Mulino cooperative which is supported by the Livorno section of the Italian Association for People with Down Syndrome (AIPD). The cooperative has been striving for years to help to guarantee basic working rights and a dignified future for children and adults with the syndrome.
The restaurant offers a unique location opposite the Quattro Mori statue with views over the Fortezza Vecchia and the fishing boats in the harbour. The menu offers freshly-cooked Livornese fish dishes at reasonable prices. It is open from Wednesday to Sunday for lunch and dinner (booking recommended). The Ca' Moro can also be hired for private events and, for a romantic evening for two, it is possible to reserve the tiny private space on the prow of the boat overlooking the harbour.
For reservations call +(39) 391 4333025