June 18, 2009

The other twin

Pin It

Over the last few months two restaurants have opened with the same name, serving very different types of cuisine. Tonight I had a chance to try out the second place named Gvsto, serving up Italian fare. Reviews had been mixed so far so I was a bit apprehensive.

I started with the panzanella al pofumo con burrata di bufala. This bread salad turned out to be a little different from my expectations, but it was OK. Shredded pieces of bread was mixed with chopped cucumber, tomato, red onions and topped with burrata cheese. Plenty of basil sauce to provide flavor.

I chose the signature dish of spaghettoni al nero di seppia con calamari e agrumi as my second course. The thick noodles frankly were a little too al dente for me, becoming a little harder to chew due to its size. But the taste was absolutely delicious. The squid ink along with tiny rings of calamari provided flavors of the sea, enhanced by garlic. Chopped cherry tomatoes added a bit of acidity and sweetness, and the final touches were provided by the thin strips of lemon zest that gave the dish some added kick. I thought everything worked very well together.

I brought a bottle of 2002 Kongsgaard Chardonnay, which I mistakenly thought was their Viognier/Roussanne. What a beautiful wine! This was probably the sweetest Chardonnay I can remember, with an explosive nose full of ripe honeydew melon, straw, lemon, sweet corn, butter, a bit of vanilla and some minerals. The color was a beautiful gold, and the wine was very ripe and sweet on the palate. No wonder Parker gave it 95 points...I whole-heartedly agree and probably would add a point or two on top.

The panna rappresa al limone con fragole fresche e menta was the perfect dessert to end this meal. The lemon-flavored clotted cream had the right acidity, and the strawberries balanced that very nicely. I could have had two of these...

The very friendly manager - who had been checking up on us all evening - kindly offered us a glass of Barolo Chinato. I've never had this before, and it sure was different! The base is Barolo, but this has been made with primarily the bark of the Cinchona tree - better known to us as quinine - and other spices. The result is a digestif that is highly regarded for its medicinal purposes. Indeed, the nose is nothing if not medicinal, with notes of hospital disinfectant, turpentine, pine and fir that reminds me of Christmas potpurri. The wine is actually somewhat bitter on the palate. I guess I don't have to worry about malaria for a while...

I think dinner tonight has been a pleasant surprise, at least for me. There were no real disappointments in terms of food, although my dining companion had a different opinion on her dishes. Service was also surprisingly friendly which always helps.

1 comment:

susan said...

Wow, your service there was fine? Ours was horrendous.
But commenting on the same name, when three of us decided to go to Gvsto for dinner, one went to the Gusto in Happy Valley. We couldn't figure out why she was late until she rang and said she was at the wrong restaurant.


Related Posts with Thumbnails

TripAdvisor Travel Map