Myself and 6 friends went to Olives for dinner for the first time last night. The location is great since most of us work downtown and it's in the heart of what's starting to be a trendy neighborhood. The decor and ambiance was very pleasant and relaxing. The open kitchen concept is great and it's very organized. The chefs were well put together as was all of the staff. The wait staff were wonderful and the bartender was very friendly. We took our time ordering since we hadn't gotten together in awhile. The server provided us with great recommendations on what we should try on the menu based on what kind of food we were looking for. We started with appetizers to share. The down side is that the appetizers are a little hard to share with large groups but with a couple they would be great.
We had the truffle French Fries with House Cut Potatoes and Truffle Pecorino Aoli, the meatball sampler, and the calamari provencale. The Fries were excellent and I recommend everyone try them when they go. The calamari was some of the best I have had and I've had a lot. The meat balls were so tasty and spiced perfectly, not dry or overcooked at all.
We all had a different entree and with 7 people it's a challenge to have everyone's meal out at the same time and at the right temperature but they pulled it off. I had the Fiocchi di Amore which was fantastic. The pesto sauce was excellent and everything was cooked perfectly. There wasn't too much or too little sauce which is normally a problem at most places. I also tried some of the gnocchi of my friends plate and it was delicious. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed their meal and nobody had any complaints at all. Which is also unheard of for a table of 7 people all with different meals.
We then had dessert, I had the chocolate cake with was decadent. The gelato that it came with was creamy and not too sweet the perfect balance for the chocolate. Also no complaints around the table about dessert and there were 3 of the 5 desserts represented.
The portion sizes on everything was perfect. I was very full by the time we left but not overly stuffed because the plates were huge. I also had 2 caesars to drink and they were both spiced perfectly which I've found some places have a big problem doing. The prices were also very good. I expected to pay more for the food we ordered then we did.
Everyone at the table agreed that they would come back on their own and agreed that we found our new go to place for getting together. I will bring anyone looking for a nice place to eat here for sure. I look forward to going back many times to try all the things on the menu that looked good. I think I'm up to about a dozen things.
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