We've lived in Decatur for many years and have watched this space change from one restaurant to another. We've passed Villagio several times and always commented that "we need to try that soon" and we finally did. We arrived at 6:45 and while the inside dining area - which is very cool, by the way (a significant improvement from Capozzi's)- the outdoor patio was nearly full. A table had just become available outside and we sat and enjoyed the music of Mark Tyler (I think that was his name - excellent!) as we dined. Our server, Devon, was personable and knowledgeable about the menu. I ordered their drink special (cherry vodka, sweet tea vodka and fruit punch) which was tasty but REALLY sweet... I would later learn that although it was sweet and drinkable, it also packed quite a punch. My husband ordered a bottle of wine (Stonewood Pinot Noir) which I enjoyed but which he thought was really sweet as well. Bread was brought which was really good - imagine fat beadsticks made of yeast roll dough. It would have been even better had it been served with olive oil and balsamic vinegar like most other Italian restaurants. But I digress. I ordered the FRITTO MISTO to start - a fried platter of "Flash Fried Artichokes, Mushrooms, & Kale with Roasted Garlic Aioli." I found there were also fried whole cloves of garlic which were actually delicious, as was the entire dish (of course, I relived the garlic throughout the rest of the night, but it really was delicious!), My husband ordered the ROASTED BEET SALAD, a really beautiful presentation of "Roasted Beets, Arugula, Mint & Gorgonzola Cheese." He is a fan of beets (me not so much) but he really enjoyed it. For our main courses I ordered the PASTA CARBONARA with a breast of chicken which was truly outstanding. As described in the menu, it included an egg yolk and when the dish arrived the yolk was just under the sliced chicken breast. I stirred the pasta and egg yolk with all the other ingredients and was treated to the creamiest pasta dish that I believe I've ever had. The portion size was just right after my enormous appetizer. The chicken breast had wonderful dark grill marks and the smoky flavor was the perfect compliment to the creamy pasta. My husband ordered the BUTTERNUT SQUASH RAVIOLI with "Spinach, Roma Tomato, Brown Butter & Sage." Well, of course I had to try it. I'm a big fan of each of the ingredients separately but together they were outstanding. My husband finished his dish and remarked on the fact that there was a tremendous amount of olive oil remaining in the dish. He suggested that the chef could have lightened up on the olive oil but that he still enjoyed it. Neither of us had room for dessert. I should note that as we sat on the deck, other diners were arriving continuously - by the time we left, the outside patio was full and so was the inside dining area. I would strongly recommend a reservation. Our delightful server, Devon, was a bit scarce later in our meal and we chalked that up to the crowd who had arrived during our meal. Our bill for two, including two appetizers, two entrees, a specialty drink and a bottle of wine was $90 including tax; the check comes with 3 levels of tip suggestions that are based on the before-tax amount. Overall, we were very well satisfied with our entire dining experience and we will definitely be back!
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