Kirby's Creekside in NC is no longer after several years of ups and downs and changes in the kitchen. This past July it was taken over by two fellows from Italy, chef Paolo Paddu from Sardinia who was previously at Il Fornaio in LA, and manager Antonio Campanelle. The new venue is called Bellavista Ristorante Italiano.
We met friends there a couple of weeks ago and shared one of the evening's appetizer specials, polenta with mushrooms. Tasty squares browned in butter with a rich earthy wild mushroom sauce. Sorry, don't recall the price but the appetizers run from $6 for bruschetta to $9 fo Gamberi alla Fiamma (sauteed baby shrimp w/artichokes, fresh tomatoes and thyme in a lemon white wine sauce.
Entrees for our group included Lasagne Classica (11.50), Ravioli di Verdura (filled w/swiss chard, pine nuts, basil, ricotta and parmesan, sauteed with garlic, green zucchini with a marinara sauce (13.50), Galleto al Forna, half game hen w/spinach and roasted potatoes (12.50) and Risotto di Mare, rice w/shrimp, scallops, clams, mussels, again can't recall the price. Everyone was quite pleased, I would have preferred the risotto to be a little flakier, but the flavor was good.
On the upper end of the menu are Osso Bucco, a Rib Eye w/porcinis in a marsala sauce, rack of lamb, and a filet mignon ranging from 19.00 to 23.00.
I brought a couple of bottles of wine but forgot to check and see what the corkage was. Recall their wine list was rather small but had a few decent local selections along with some Italian ones.
We finished off the evening sharing the two dessert offerings, tiramisu and creme brulle, both very good.
We ended up cooking our two other nights in the area but did manage to get to Ike's Quarter Cafe for a breakfast and a lunch. For our late breakfast I was craving their biscuits w/cajun gravy and had sides of a couple of eggs and their sausage which was two generous great tasting patties. The biscuits however were not as light as on previous visits. My wife chose the gumbo which she proclaimed as perfect for a crisp fall morning. The corn bread that came with the gumbo was a most pleasant surprise, small pie shaped wedges that had been lightly browned on the edges with a sweet corn flavor that neither of us had ever experienced. We asked for another serving and were each given two more pieces.
For lunch the next day we split a blackened catfish Po'boy and the Pork Mole Po'boy, small cubes of pork with corn and small diced carrots in a rich mole sauce that worked perfectly with the other flavors. Wife also had the sweet potato with rice soup that she loved. We saw a couple of orders of burgers come out of the kitchen that looked really good, will have to try next trip.
Bellavista Ristorante Italiano
101 Broad St. (east of Hwy 49)
Ike's Quarter Cafe
401 Commercial, 1 blk N of Broad across from New Moon