Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Teatro Goldoni

My sweetie pie planned a Friday night date to Teatro Goldoni – where has this place been all my life? (Well, that’s a silly question, because it’s been on K Street for years. I just didn’t have enough sense to hustle my buns up there.)

There is a reason Teatro Goldoni was rated DC's best Italian restaurant by Esquire Magazine and ranked as DC’s highest rated Italian restaurant in the Washingtonian. It’s really that good.

If you’ve read about Goldoni lately, you’ve probably read about their carpaccio of branzino presented in a wooden cigar box. Tom Sietsema reviewed it, and it’s reportedly one of their most popular dishes. We decided to skip it, and opted instead for the Cornetti di pesce marinato assortiti- or seafood cones, which included tuna (with green olives capers spring onions), salmon (with crispy fennel, spring onions sour cream caviar dill), scallops (with red and yellow peppers, chives and roasted garlic slices), and morelles (with porcini mushrooms, blood oranges and spring onions). All of this presented in sweet, flaky miniature ice cream cones, and I knew we were off to a great start. Each cone had a unique taste; a balance of salty and sweet. We also tried the roasted sweet onion salad, which did not disappoint, but was totally overshadowed by the seafood cones.

For main courses we choose the lobster risotto and salt cured Moularde duck breast. The duck was served with spinach-whipped potatoes and a perfect black olive sauce. And let’s not forget the artichoke hearts, which I think were roasted – and I know were delicious.

So I think I’ve conveyed here that the meal was pretty perfect – the atmosphere included. The glow of the light and the use of warm colors throughout gave a nice ambiance of romance and “I’m here for a special occasion”, but I was comfortable enough being there in a work-dress. We had great service. There was a great jazz band playing, and as we finished dinner and dessert (crème brulee and house-made ice cream) I really, really wanted to stick around. We didn’t – we had plans to meet up with out-of-towners, but doesn’t that just sound like the perfect excuse to go back?

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