Date Night: Cucina della Ragazza
My hubby was out most of this past week on business so, Friday night when he got home, we headed to Westport for a date night! Our intention was to visit Pot Pie again…but, the open seating was full when we got there and there were no reservations available when we called ahead.
I thought I remembered an Italian joint being in the area. After a quick Google search and a short drive down Westport Road, we arrived at Cucina della Ragazza: Deli & Wine. The place was hoppin’! It is a quaint corner venue with small, intimate tables and open bar seating.
As we arrived, a couple were leaving their seats at the bar. While we waited for their spaces to be cleared, I peered around at the small rustic restaurant: a huge stone fireplace, wooden bar top, and old tin ceiling. There couldn’t have been more than five tables in the whole space. You could see right into the kitchen along the back of the restaurant.
Everyone was smiling, drinking wine, and eating delicious smelling food. It seemed like everyone knew everyone. The bartender, also the restaurant owner, was in charge. She had us sit and offered us the menu. The feature of the drink menu was handmade Lemoncello! You could order it straight or in a specialty cocktail. We each ordered one of the cocktails and they were both delicious!
The folks to our right were enjoying Caesar salads and grilled pork chops. And to our left, a steak dish and a huge bowl of pasta. Everything smelled amazing!
For a starter, we decided on the Roasted Goat Cheese. Out came a piping hot cast iron dish filled with red sauce and slices of creamy goat cheese served with crisp crostini. This is one of my favorite combinations! What seemed to stick out the most to me was the red sauce. It was different. Fresh, bright, acidic, simple. It was really good.
For dinner, the hubs ordered Chicken Saltimbocca with Polenta and Haricot Vert. I ordered the Linguini with Clam Sauce. Let me tell you, I have never had polenta that I’ve thought was even remotely close to being considered edible. THIS POLENTA WAS THE BOMB. Creamy, not gritty, and full of rich flavor; it’s almost indescribable. I finished the hubs’ plate. Not to mention the moist and flavorful Saltimbocca. Spectacular. My linguini was very delicious, too. The only thing missing was a slab of bread to mop up the white wine sauce… Everything was so good. And filling.
However, while we were noshing on dinner, the people to our right were delivered a ginormous meatball. It smelled so good. We decided to order one for “dessert.”
Even though we were already soo full, we took a couple of bites of the meatball. It was amazing. We couldn’t finish it but, I would definitely order it, again, as an appetizer…
After dinner, you could have rolled us out with a wheelbarrow. What a treat!
Even though we didn’t get to go to Pot Pie like we had planned, we discovered another gem! We will definitely be going back to Cucina della Ragazza; this time, with a reservation and couple of friends!