Scampi was not on our radar until I happened to walk by one day recently and check out the menu. The chef/owner is a disciple of Michael White, which explains why it’s quite different from what we normally associate with a typical Italian restaurant. Instead of appetizers, salads and mains, it’s divided into crudos (appetizer sized), vegetables (some are salads), pastas (main course or shared as appetizers) and grill (main courses). There are 6 choices in each category, so plenty to choose from.
Stanley started with beets and I had razor clams (very hard to find around here). Next he had chicken cacciatore, which was very different from the standard, and I had the signature pasta dish, mafaldini with chopped shrimp. For dessert we shared a budino (a thick fudgy chocolate pudding). Everything was delicious.
With so many restaurants in and around the Village, we sometimes miss a good one that’s been around a long time. Such is the case with Piccolo Angolo. You could walk past it many times without taking particular notice. Lucky for us, friends whose taste we trust had eaten there recently and were pleased with it.
Stanley started with grilled octopus, which was exceptionally tender and flavorful. I had clams oreganata, a classic preparation and a generous serving. Portions here are very large. We ended up taking home half of our main courses. For me that was veal francese, and for him osso bucco. They came with big plates of broccoli and pasta. Lucky to have saved room for dessert, we had the amaretto tiramisu. Scrumptious!
The varied menu means we will be coming back to try more.
We hadn’t been to John Andrews in quite a few years, but as we are constantly searching for restaurants with interesting menus, I looked it up online and found that the menu is quite varied and interesting indeed. It was the perfect place for a quiet Sunday night dinner.
We started with fried calamari, and ricotta gnocchi. The calamari were nice and tender, and the gnocchi were in a light broth with speck, kale and sage (I’m not a fan of kale, but in this case it did not detract). For mains I had rainbow trout with bok choy and potatoes (I substituted mashed for fingerlings, a smart choice). Stanley had duck breast with leg confit. The spices and accompaniments were especially good. For dessert we had the coffee custard, which was exceptional.