Monday, January 30, 2012

Breakfast at Nick's on Broadway - A+ again!

It's been some months since we walked the four short blocks over to Nick's on Broadway for brunch -- this time we were early and had breakfast.

We waited all of 60 seconds for two stools at the counter overseeing the cook line. As always, the service was friendly and the food delicious. we started off with a cocktail special (OK it was 9am but we were celebrating Dad's 102 birthday) of limoncello, prosecco and vermouth. Delicious!

Susie had the black beans with scrambled eggs, salsa and tortillas,
and I had an omelet with Swiss cheese and caramelized onions, with a side of chicken sausage.

If you have never been to Nick's go; if you haven't been in a while, go soon. It's always worth a wait. And this time, one of those rare times to be sure, we didn't have to wait at all.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Back to Tini's

OK, I know -- it seems we're hung up on the same places to eat in Providence, that we go to the same places over and over again. Well, there's a good reason for that -- we like those places. That's pretty simple, I should think.

Anyway, we went back to Tini's last night (Friday) ostensibly for a glass of sparkling to celebrate Susie's new space (the lease will be signed on Monday) and ended up staying for dinner.

We started out with a cocktail of gin, Campari and prosecco, along with an order of Tini's fries with mayonnaise and hot sauce. Next up was the roasted fennel app with a glass of Gruner, and then Susie had the scallops with beluga lentils (washed down by a Provencal rose) and I had the Veal Milanese (con un bicchiere da nebbiolo).

Service, as always is friendly and the atmosphere cozy and intimate (although I would opt for more comfortable stools).

In a city noted for its culinary creatives, Darius Salko is one of the most inventive chefs around -- but even more importantly he has a deep understanding of harmony and balance in his flavorings and portions. My veal, a tender cut, was breaded and lightly fried to perfection and the accompanying wide pasta tasted as if the cheese was in the pasta and not on it (no messy glob of cheesy sauce oozing oil and spreading everywhere on this dish). Susie's scallops were equally perfect and the lentils with bits of bacon made for a superb winter dish.

Tini's menu may have changed from its Tapas roots but it still remains one of the better values in Providence.

200 Washington St
Providence, RI 02903

Monday, January 16, 2012

Fanizzi's in Provincetown

OK so it's not Providence but it's sound a lot like it.

Anyway, on a recent day trip to the very tip of Cape Cod we stopped for lunch at this place on Commercial Street in Provincetown. The food was OK, service friendly but rushed -- the place was packed since there was virtually nothing else open in town. But the view was incredible.

Spring rolls for starters (over-fried and oddly tough we thought):

Susan had a Caesar with grilled chicken (not bad):

And I had fresh cod (locally caught I was told), fried with cheddar on a toasted bun with fries.

I thought the fish tasted rather bland and the fries had an unusual crispy coating, which didn't have an impact on the flavor one way or the other. The slaw, however, was not the typical sloppy mayonnaise mess but a crisp, tasty vinegar concoction that was actually quite good.

We washed the meal down with an inexpensive but crisp vinho verde (Portugal). Oh, and we skipped dessert.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Year's Eve Dinner at New Rivers

Although the menu was limited, what struck me -- and I think everyone at the table agreed -- this was one of those very rare times that everything on the menu seemed appealing.

After the first course, which we all shared, I started with the duck pastrami; everyone else had the tartlet.

Along with the starters, we shared a bottle of pinot gris from Willamette Valley. For the third course Dorothy had the lamb rack, Dick had the chop, and Susie had the scallops:

I had the 3-grain cassoulet:

The main course was accompanied by a bottle of Brouilly. We all shared the cheese course (scrumptious). For dessert I had the ice cream with caramel sauce, Susie had tarragon pound cake and Dick and Dorothy both had the molten chocolate cake.

We all thought the food universally delicious, the portions right and the pacing spot on as well. Bruce, Beau and the crew at New River's did a spectacular job of making a special evening truly enjoyable -- well worth the $65 per person.

Leaving the restaurant I felt the evening air was only slightly crisp and smacked more of late fall than winter. As we walked leisurely back to the car we were amazed at how quiet the city was, wondering what was really happening with the Providence Bright Night (i.e., "First Night") program. Oddly typical in a city noted for being typically odd.

Happy New Year!!