A group of nine of us (all adults) had 6:30 PM reservations on a Saturday night. We were seated at a long table near the live piano player. The piano player provided nice background music while we dined – just music, no vocals. It never was a distraction and he played a nice mix of music.
Our server, I think her name was Katie, handled our large party with ease. She had no problems splitting our checks up by couple. She took our drink orders, and was gracious about replacing one of the group’s martinis that just didn’t taste good (the Dino). I had a Mina that was very good; sweeter than I imagined than it would be (homemade limoncello, vodka, and limonata). Another friend ordered the Toto (whipped cream vodka, espresso, coffee liquor, vodka, and cayenne pepper) and it too was delicious although I didn’t sense the cayenne pepper.
As other reviewers have stated, the Chef’s tasting is a great option – five courses of smaller portions for only $25. Out of the nine of us dining; five of us opted for the Chef’s Tasting. Each course had two options from which to choose. I opted for 1) Arancini, 2) Forte, 3) Garlic Parmesan Soup, 4) Spiedini, and 5) a truffle.
The Arancini was a Risotto fritter stuffed with fontina cheese and topped with spinach aioli. It was a delightful little bite. It was about the size of a roasted marshmallow. Crispy on the outside and a nice mix of melted cheese and risotto. It was colorfully presented in a delicate dish.
Next came the Forte salad which came highly recommended by dining partners, but I was disappointed with it. It was created with Peppery Arugula, goat cheese, dried Michigan cherries, & honey Dijon vinaigrette. I felt the vinaigrette was too thick and overpowered the other flavors. Again the serving size was perfect – just a taste; not a typical side-salad.
The soup was absolutely amazing!! It was creamy goodness. It wasn’t too thick, it had no flour-y taste, and it didn’t have an overpowering garlic flavor. It was perfectly balanced. After I had polished off my taste, a dining partner suggested it would be excellent on the bread cubes presented on the table.
I was able to taste my husband’s lasagna soup. It surprised me you could put the entire flavor of a lasagna into a soup. My friend had the Caprese salad. It had wonderful mozzarella that wasn’t too soft, fresh basil, and nice meaty tomatoes. It wasn’t prepared with any balsamic vinegar but when a side of it was requested it was brought to the table without any issue.
My Spiedini was a single skewer of seasoned beef tenderloin with about five small chunks of meat. I asked that it be served medium, and it may have been a little rarer than I normally liked, I still quite enjoyed it. I was able to remove it easily from the skewer and cut each chunk in half. While not scorching hot, it was still warm when it reached the table. The sides were rather unremarkable roasted potato and amazing crinkle-cut grilled zucchini that had a smoky flavor. It may have been grilled with some pancetta at some point, because it had a unique flavor. I would have loved twice as much!
Dessert was confusing. I had ordered the tiramisu, but our waitress brought out an entire platter of desserts saying it was our lucky day for those who didn’t order dessert. It contained some Italian Cookies, some truffles, and a few spoons of other desserts which I wasn’t able to catch the description. I took a truffle, but didn’t take anything else as I was expecting my tiramisu which never arrived, nor did anyone else’s. I may have just misunderstood what was communicated.
We received a sampling of the homemade chocolate liquor as well which was delicious. It was smooth and quite sippable, although a few people shot it right down. I was pleased we were able to dine at a leisurely pace. We never felt rushed and the chef did come out briefly for a dining room walk-through, but didn’t really converse with our table.
I will definitely be back and can’t wait to try a different menu. This is amazing Italian food with lovely local providers being used to present seasonal offerings.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.