Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Supper Club Round 3

Oh my friends... every now and then you have a dinner that really hits the mark at every turn!  Our 3rd Supper Club outing at Aragosta Bistro in the North End was that dinner!

For our 3rd outing we were originally planning on BBQ theme, but with a few date changes and a smaller group in attendance we decided to take advantage of the Chef Dinner at the Bistro.  

The Chef dinner consists of 3-4 courses (we did 4) dishes prepared in front of you by the Chef.  We also did a wine pairing for $25 to go along with it.  The amazing thing about it was that we were able to talk with our chef, and pick out items in the menu that interested us and also things to stay clear of.

Front row seats to the cooking action!  The three of us cozied up to the bar and quickly realized that evening was going to be fantastic!  As you can imagine a Tuesday evening is not the busiest night for restaurants and I think we lucked out!  The staff had the time to chat with us about the food, wine and their careers in the food industry.

It really felt as if we had saddled up to a friends kitchen island and were enjoying a dinner in someone's home and not at a hotel bistro.

We stated the meal with an assortment of meats, breads and eggplant puree.  AMAZING!  We also nibbled on stuffed figs, but we inhaled those too quickly for me to get a good shot of them.

Hand Crafted Selection of Salumi, Caponata, Hot Cherry Peppers · 18
I really appreciated that the chef lets us each pick an item throughout the courses.  Very often it is all or nothing when you do a pre-fixe menu. It was nice to get what I was craving and still get a bite here and there from the other plates!

Arancinis, Fresh Mozzarella and Bolognese Stuffed, Pecorino Romano · 11
By the time our first course came I was already in a blissful state.  The food was fresh, seasoned well and pair with some great wines.  I was really excited to try the octopus dish, I grew up having octopus at my great aunts each Christmas and I still crave it every holiday season.

Chef plating our delicious dishes!
Octopus can be the best thing you have ever had or the worst depending on how it is cooked!  Chef Victor gets a point for knowing how to work this creature from the deep into a delectable morsel of seafood goodness!
Charred Octopus Salad, Autumn Fingerling, Smoked Pancetta · 13
I barely looked up to talk about this... I just kept shoveling the salty and fresh goodness into my gullet! (I am super classy... )

Chef at work!
The next course may be the best pasta dish I have had since traveling to Italy a few years back.  The sauce prepared by the kitchen takes days to prepare!  They roast, braise and slow cook the meats in this sauce into submission and then let it simmer away the day until you have the most perfect sauce I can remember! (shhh... do not tell my Grandmother I said that!).  The pasta is made locally and as a bit of brie rolled into it that melts just a bit  as you eat it.
Pappardelle Bolognese, Veal Cheek & Ox Tail Ragu, Porcini Powder  · 22
I clearly did not like this....
Please sir, can I have some more......
Karen ordered the Sole which was cooked to perfection!  Fresh, lemony with the perfect base of a light risotto to accompany it.

Lemon Sole Oreganato, Sardinian Risotto, Cape Cod Clam Brodo  · 27
For my "main course" I went with the veal cutlet.  Again, I thought I might have died and gone to a happy place on my first bite!  I do not usually order Veal but when the Chef tells you to order something, you just obey.  No questions....

The veal was perfectly cooked, with just enough breading and crust to give you a nice crunch when you bit into it.  The risotto stole my heart though.  Somehow they managed to get the taste of fresh summer corn to burst out of this creamy dish.  I think I licked that plate clean too....

Veal Cutlet “Alla Milanese” Saffron Corn Risotto, Butternut and Arugula Salad · 33
By the time dessert came I thought for sure I was conquered.  Where could I put another bite?
But then I saw this plate of dessert heaven and knew there had to be a bit of room in my hollow leg!  Chocolate Bread Pudding, Olive Oil Cake, Sorbet and Prosecco to boot!  There will be a lot of Hot Yoga to work off this meal.  But at that moment yoga was the last thing from my thoughts.

Assortment of bread pudding, olive oil cake and sorbet with Prosecco 
I cannot say enough good things about this meal!  It is very rare that I am so over the moon about a dinner that I propose to the Chef on the spot (He thanked me, but thought his wife would not agree...) BOOO....

From the hostess to the sous chefs, everyone at Aragosta Bisto made our evening an event that I will hold all other restaurants to for a very long time!

I highly suggest going there if you have friends in town, you are visiting the city or just have no plans on a Tuesday...

Thank you to the staff and my roommate Erica for suggesting this spot!  I will be back!!!