Friday, June 10, 2011
REAL HOUSEWINES OF NEW JERSEY - SNAROLINA FOODIE TRAVELS NORTH
This week, SNarolina Foodie headed to Jersey for a marketing meeting. Fortunately for me, I work for a great company full of foodies, especially our president. Now, I realize we have some great italian restaurants here in the Carolinas, but I think many of you will agree, much of the best are going to be up north where there is a heavy Italian population. With that, I must say that I had the most amazing Italian meal ever!
Eric,company president, scheduled for our group to have dinner at da Filippo's in Somerville, NJ. Apparently, Eric is a regular as Filippo himself came out to give us the menu. Now as Filippo spoke in his native heavy Italian accent, I could gather that there would be a lot of choices for dinner. As he spouted off what seemed like everything on the menu, I soon had come to realize that Filippo was giving us a list of everything that we were going to have. Our CFO, Neal, a true wine connoisseur provided us with 3 separate wines to go with dinner, A red (2007 Vietti Italian (Piedmont) Red "Scarrone - Barbera d'Alba), a white and a bubbly. I don't recall the names of the white or the bubbly, though they were Italian and delicious.
The menu for the evening is as followed:
Grilled round flat bread filled with mortadella provolone cheese tomatoes arrugula & onions - If I saw this on the menu, I probably wouldn't order it. The combination of flavors was pretty awesome! This could be a meal in itself.
La Bruschetta della Casa
Italian bread topped with ripe tomatoes garlic extra virgin olive oil fresh basil & parmigiano reggiano cheese - hands down, the best bruschetta that I've ever had. Also, the freshest of ingredients.
Mozzarella e Pomodori
Fresh mozzarella & tomatoes dressed with extra virgin olive oil and fresh basil - fresh mozzarella, I've had many times. Sometimes can be bland, but this gave me hope that fresh mozzarella can be excellent.
Imported prosciutto di Parma sweet soppressata fresh mozzarella peppers grilled zucchini - I'm a huge fan of charcuterie and it was good. Filippo stated that this version of prosciutto was pretty special.
Frittelle di Rughetta
Batter dipped arrugula pan fried & dressed in a garlic anchovy & parmigiano reggiano cheese cream sauce - In the south, we fry everything. Apparently, Italians think the same way. Fried arrugula? Yes, and it wasn't anything that I would expect.
Ravioli al Filetto di Blu Grancio
Ravioli filled with ricotta blue crab - some pasta dishes with crab can very much disappoint. Then again, some pasta dishes made with "crab", aren't serving crab. I could eat this all day.
Filetto di Baccala`fresco alla Michelina
Domestic fresh cod fish fillet dressed with a touch of garlic anchovies and hot pepper - the one menu item that we had a choice. Chicken or fish. I asked what was recommended and our server said the chef was known for fish. Glad I did.
Warm puff pastry filled with orange custard - I am not a fan or orange flavored deserts, but this was what was chosen. Very good indeed.
Finally, being in a true Italian restaurant, I finished with a personal favorite, a double espresso.
I realize that most of you don't have a reason to head to NJ. But if that rare chance happens, I suggest heading to Somerville and enjoying this gem.
Finally, a list of their acccolades:
The Luigi Veronelli dining guide " One of the Best Italian Restaurant in North America "
Star Ledger " 3.5 Stars "
Zagat Survey "Award of Distinction"
The New York Times " Very Good "
New Jersey Monthly Magazine " Best Italian Restaurant Critic Pick "