Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Press Dinner: Da Marcella

Da Marcella: Wine & Menu
I was invited to partake in a lovely meal at Da Marcella, a humble and cozy neighborhood taverna in the Village. The owner, Manual Moreno opened this restaurant in tribute to his mother who would cook large meals to feed their neighbors and continues the tradition of keeping the costs low with the motto "nobody should get rich feeding thy neighbor". Likewise, the restaurant continues to use his family's recipes and this passion and tradition shines through in the food. Speaking of the food, let's take a peak at what we got to sample...

Our first course started with Scottish Wild Salmon & Avocado Tartare which was a refreshing spin on the traditional Tuna Tartare. The ingredients were unique and new, but the preparation and overall taste was very classic.

Da Marcella: Scottish Wild Salmon & Avocado Tartare
 We also enjoyed the Grilled Marinated Spanish Octopus with Fresh Caper Berries, Sundried Tomatoes, and Rughetta. This was the most perfectly cooked octopus I've had to date- not the least trace of chewiness whatsoever, just tender and delicious prepared with classic Mediterranean flavors.

Da Marcella: Grilled Marinated Spanish Octopus
 For our second course we got to try Chef Francesco's Meatballs "al Suga di Pomodoro" which absolutely lived up to the expectations set in the previous course.

Da Marcella: Chef Francesco's Meatballs "al Sugo di Pomodoro"
 My absolute favorite of all the dishes we got to try was the Burrata with San Daniele Prosciutto and ruffle Sauce over Crostone. I am a total sucker for high quality burrata and the prosciutto and truffle really pushed this over the edge into the amazing category.

Da Marcella: Burrata
The pasta dish we got to try was the Tagliatelle Artigianali "Setaro al Ragu" Bolognese Classico. Another solid bet on this menu.
Da Marcella: Tagliatelle Artigianali
Moving on to our meat course we tried the Braised Colorado Lamb Shank with Creamy Polenta. The lamb fell right off the bone and was incredibly tender and fresh, not overly gamey like some lamb you can find in the city. The polenta pairing gave this the traditional "meat & potatoes" feel, but with an Italian flair which made this a really lovely dish.

Da Marcella: Braised Colorado Lamb Shank with Creamy Polenta
Next up came the dessert course. After such a rich and delicious meal, usually the group will have a bite of the dessert to try it, but not be able to finish. But not so at Da Marcella- I've never seen dessert at a Press Dinner go so quickly! In particular, the cheesecake was so amazing that it didn't even make it to my end of the table. They graciously gave us another serving and I couldn't blame my fellow diners for snagging it up- a real stand out!

Da Marcella: Pannacotta

Da Marcella: Ricotta Cheese Cake

Da Marcella: Tiramisu
Da Marcella is simply a lovely neighborhood spot with delicious food served in a warm and welcoming atmosphere. Definitely worth stopping by- if you do DEFinitely get the cheesecake! (I have to admit, I almost stayed after the dinner to order my own serving, but wasn't sure I'd be able to waddle out the door afterwards!).

*My meal was provided by the restaurant as part of a Press Dinner.
Da Marcella on Urbanspoon

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