Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Pizzeria Posto: Pillowy Gnocchi

When my friend Jen was having a birthday last month, I suggested having a celebration at Pizzeria Posto. I knew it had excellent food, was reasonably priced and likely would be a fun stop for a party. I have previously posted a couple reviews of the restaurant, here and here, but had not eaten there for dinner yet. But felt that based on my three prior visits, dinner would be very good too.

I then learned that Edson, who once had been the Manager at L'Andana in Burlington, was now the General Manager of Pizzeria Posto. Edson is a very nice person, and did a great job at L'Andana so I am sure he will do equally as well at Posto. Plus, he worked with Chef/Owner Chef Joe Cassinelli at L'Andana, which should make for a good relationship. Edson helped make the final arrangements for the birthday party, placing us into the private room to the rear of the dining room, a bit more intimate of a spot for our celebration.

Their wine list is very interesting, with a more varied selection than many other similar places. You'll find Chardonnay and Pinot Grigio, but also more exotic grapes like Roero Arneis, Falanghina, and Verdeca. You'll find Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon, but also more exotic grapes like Mencia, Bobal and Primitivo. You can order wine by the glass, bottle, or carafe (similar to a half-bottle). Glasses commonly range from $4-$10, with a few reserve wine at a higher price. Most of the bottles run $25-$40, with a few at a higher price. Thus, I feel the list is reasonably priced.

Everyone seemed to enjoy the wines they drank, and I was taken with the De-2 Mencia, from the Bierzo region of Spain ($27/bottle). An excellent example of the fine Mencia grape, and a nice choice for Italian cuisine. Plenty of fruit but with good structure and balance, and mild tannins. A few others in our party also ordered a bottle and enjoyed it immensely.

We started our dinner with some Rosemary Sea Salt Bread ($2.50) and Fries (hand cut rosemary sea salt fries, with garlic aioli $4). It is no secret how much I love fresh, hot bread and this bread was impressive. We all tore into the bread, dipping it into some chile oil, and savoring each hot, flaky piece. The fries were also very good, perfectly crisp with just the right amount of salt.

For appetizers, we ordered several different ones, including a couple of my favorites like the Crisp Arancini and Nonna's Meatballs (both which I have previously raved about). I was most interested in trying a couple of their seven pasta dishes, which are available in half portions ($9-$10) or full portions ($16-$18). Though they all sounded delicious, I opted for half portions of the Gnocchi and Agnolotti dal plin. Some of my favorite dishes at L'Andana had been their pasta, so I was hoping Posto's pasta might be equally as compelling.

My hopes came true as the two pasta dishes were exceptional. The potato gnocchi were made with braised lamb, port wine, and parmesan crema. These gnocchi were so pillowy, some of the lightest gnochhi I have ever tasted. There was plenty of very tender lamb and the savory sauce was quite delicious too. A top notch dish which I highly recommend. The agnolotti were stuffed with braised veal and topped with butter and parmesan. They too were very tender, savory and scrumptious, another dish I must recommend. I eagerly look forward to checking out the rest of their pasta dishes, which do change regularly based on what is available and seasonal.

We ordered a few pizzas too, which were just as good as on my previous visits. No one had any complaints about the food, and I heard plenty of raves. Overall, it was an excellent birthday party and Jen was very pleased.

I will definitely be returning here for both brunch and dinner, and highly recommend it to my readers. Excellent food, a more unique wine list, and reasonable prices are all good reasons to venture here.

Pizzeria Posto on Urbanspoon

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