I had the pleasure of trying out Luce last night - in a word, wow. The flavours were extraordinary and the presentation was both beautiful and exciting. Many of the dishes were served as a trio or other combination of preparations (on large square ceramic floor tiles) so there were many, varied tastes to enjoy with each course. This place can't help but excite the food-lover in all of us.
The waiter started out by explaining that the menu represents a culinary journey inspired by each of the regions in Italy. Diners are encouraged to try the 5-course tasting menu or to eat family-style (i.e. share). We chose the latter. There are pasta appetizers, a selection of "pesce" and "carne" dishes served without accompaniment and and then a number of "contorni".
Personal highlights were the ravioli - two stuffed with chestnut puree and the other 2 served with a squash puree in a delicate lemon zabaglione sauce. In the centre was a pear (doing a great impersonation of a beet) that I believe had been poached in red wine, stuffed with foie gras and some nuts (I think) - the combination of flavours was ethereal. We enjoyed the cod prepared 3 ways (cacciatore, croquettes and in a salad with raisins) and the rapini contorni. The artichoke contorni was just okay. For dessert, we tried the chocolate and lemon platters - between those, we had 8 different taste sensations to sample.
The dinner was pricey - appetizers, contorni and desserts are around $12 each and mains hover around the $30 mark so most couples will probably spend about $120 pre-tax, tip and alcohol. But the meal was truly yummy, inventive and memorable and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it (or go back again). Enjoy!
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