Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Warm and Festive

Il Fornaio

I used to go to Il Forniao in San Francisco fairly often for lunch when I worked in the Financial District. I liked the food. There is an Il Forniao closer by in Corte Madera, and it seemed like a good evening to stop in yesterday. The first thing to say is that if you want to get in a warm and festive holiday mood, you've got to put this place on your agenda this season. It is all decked out for Christmas, and very tastefully done.

Zuppa di Zucca

Dad and I ordered off the "Best of Festa" menu that celebrates the best of the Festa Regionale. We both started with the Zuppa di Zucca from Lombardia. This is a butternut squash and russet potato soup with sage and onions, topped with a sfilatino crouton and taleggio cheese. It was delicious, and the sage made a perfect top note. Sorry the photo is a little blurry. I think the camera has trouble focusing on white in the dark.

Pollo alla Val d'Ostana

Dad wanted chicken, so he ordered the Pollo alla Val d'Ostana from Val d'Aosta. Some things just don't photograph so that they look as mouthwatering as they are. You can't see it in the photo, but off to the left the chicken breast tapers up to a bone. I kid you not, my 88 year old Dad got away with the whole thing and was gnawing on the bone! This was breaded boneless chicken breast (the rest was indeed boneless) filled with fontina and wrapped with imported Italian ham, sauteed with sage and Dijon mustard sauce and served with mashed potatoes and sauteed spinach.

Salmone Ostia Antica

I had the Salmone Ostia Antica from Lazio. I was impressed with how perfectly cooked the entire salmon was considering it was wrapped around four spears of asparagus. It was cooked just the right amount whichever direction you sampled. The dish was billed as Salmon with fresh asparagus, baked with artichokes, capers and lemon, served with sauteed spinach and mashed potatoes. I decided that sauteed spinach is a wonderful holiday side as it is so green and glossy! It also tasted good sauteed with some sliced garlic cloves. The mashed potatoes are better pictured in the photo of Dad's dish, and they tasted like clouds! So wonderfully balanced and light. This was a fabulous meal from the impeccable service to the delicious regional specialties.

Previously reviewed:
December 21, 2006


Greg said...

looks great! I have coffee and excellent pastries there in the morning.

Anonymous said...

The butternut squash soup looks fantastic. I like the concept of sage and squash. Nice photography.