Had a fabulous 9 pm dinner for two last night at Cacio e Pepe.
Appetizers: Beef carpaccio & Wild arugula salad
Entrees: Tonnarelli cacio e pepe & Homemade nettle gnocchi
The beef carpaccio was amazing, with a liberal amount of truffle oil. The wild arugula salad was very refreshing; nicely balanced and lightly dressed. The rich saltiness of the romano provided a nice counterpoint to the crunchy sweetness of the red apple.
The nettle gnocchi were pillowy, with an earthy sauce that managed a lot of depth without being heavy. The cacio e pepe was among the best $11 I've ever spent on food. It was delicious, and the pasta comes out in a crater within a romano wheel. It is swirled around at the table to make its fantastic sauce.
Service was fantastic. We had a very friendly Italian waiter who didn't understand much English, but smiled at everything we said nonetheless.
Granted, it was not a busy evening, but the chef was frequently out in the dining area checking on everything.
We had the cheaper of two verdicchios on the wine list ($28) and were very satisfied.
After declining desert (we were very full), the chef sent a panna cotta dessert to our table. Creamy and light, the panna cotta was complimented by a rose petal syrup.
Total bill: $78 + tip.
Excellent overall dining experience, and an incredible value, in our opinions.