This past Monday was my fiancée’s birthday, so we headed down to Hostaria del Piccolo for dinner. I had never heard of or seen this restaurant before, but I found it while browsing through my OpenTable app and I figured it would be fun to check out a new place. I was considering a few other west side restaurants including the Buffalo Club, Tar and Roses, and La Botte, but Hostaria del Piccolo looked nice and casual and the menu made my stomach rumble.
We had reservations but they were apparently not necessary on a Monday night. We were greeted by a friendly hostess and taken to a seat out on the patio. I’m one of those year-round Christmas lights enthusiasts, and Hostaria had a nice chain of blue Christmasy lights strung around their minimalist/woody patio. It was pretty cozy back there. Heat lamps are at the ready in case it gets a little cold, and Monday Night Football is on the TV in case you want to stretch to sneak a peek at the score.
Again, the menu here is amazing. I let the birthday girl make the choices because I was overwhelmed by the choices and hey, it was her birthday.
We started with the calamari and shrimp appetizer. Somehow we made it out of Lobsterfest with a craving for more seafood. It was really tasty and I knew I could expect only good things to come out of that kitchen.
We decided to split our entrées so we could try both a pizza and a pasta dish. We (she) decided on the Testarossa for pizza. It was made with tomato sauce, Tuscan bean pesto, Gaeta olives, heirloom tomatoes, and basil. It was among the freshest pizzas I have ever tasted. We only finished half of it at the restaurant, but two more slices managed to disappear after we returned home. So good.
For pasta we went with the penne, which had cream of porcini and truffle oil. Usually when I eat al dente pasta it is because I am hungry and I broke out the strainer a little too soon. Here, the slightly al dente pasta tasted more like some sort of pasta art. Next time I’m in a rush in the kitchen I’m just going to add some truffle oil. I think anything with truffle oil on it is the greatest thing in the world so my non-foodie self is probably just easily fooled. OR, is this is the best penne ever? I need you to stop by and let me know. I cannot continue to go around being fooled by truffles at every non-Irish pub restaurant I go to.
There is so much more menu to be explored here. Maybe we go again tonight?