We went to this restaurant on the recommendation of friends and folks here on CH. This dinner was, hands down, the best restaurant meal I've ever had. If you're in the Burlington VT area, RUN to this restaurant and eat there. If you're not in the area, DRIVE here and go to this restaurant. ;)
Ok, so maybe those of you who live in places where fantastic food is de riguer might not feel the same way about it, but I'm hardly an unschooled country girl when it comes to foodie things, and this place just blew us both away.
Now for the details. :) First, their web menu: http://www.trattoriadelia.com/ourmenu.... This is a bit out of date, and the prices aren't quite accurate. They have some new things on their menu (like the ravioli we had) as well, and of course this doesn't reflect the daily specials.
We arrived a minute or two early for our 5PM reservation (they open at 5). The service was impeccable. The hostess didn't have to find our name in the reservations book, she knew it when I said it. She knew where our table was without having to consult a chart, and she checked it to make sure it was ready before seating us, then took us to it promptly. We had armless chairs (we're both very fat, armless chairs are a blessing) and the table was tucked between some other tables, but the way we were positioned it mostly felt like we were alone, we could see only each other, which was wonderful. The restaurant filled up very very quickly and there was only one table empty through most of our meal, and someone was being seated in that one just as we were leaving. There was a fair amount of noise from the other people around us, but we had no problem with our quiet conversation.
I'd informed them when I made the reservation that it was our anniversary, and after we were seated and had started looking over the menus, someone I believe was a manager brought over two flutes of prosecco and congratulated us on our anniversary, and thanked us for choosing to spend it with them. I'd never had prosecco before (and neither of us drink anything at all, not even wine, usually. Though I do like white wine on occasion, it's seldom worth buying it for just me, and it means I can't drive, so I just don't have it), so I can't say if it was a superior prosecco, but I liked it more than I usually like wines. :) It was a very nice touch, and I thought it very kind of them to give us such a treat. Even my husband drank all of his, and he -never- drinks wine.
The brought out warm, rustic italian bread, crusty and hearty, with herbed garlic butter that was plenty soft enough to spread on the warm bread. There were packages of very thin breadsticks, as well. I opened one more out of curiosity, and was impressed that not one of the breadsticks was broken. :) They were so fine and fragile, that seemed to be quite a feat to me. :)
We ordered carpaccio (9.00) and antipasti misti ($10.50) for starters and shared them. The carpaccio had lemon and olive oil, as well as shaved grana padano cheese, and fresh arugula. It was just delightful. The cheese was fantastic and the arugula was perfectly fresh and crisp. The flavours blended wonderfully. The antipasti was fabulous, as well. Lovely, meaty olives that were well-cured, stunningly well-roasted peppers, proscuitto and salami, their own fresh mozzarella, aged provolone... just great all the way down.
For primi we shared Gnocchi alla Gioverde ($14 I think, I can't remember for sure) and Ravioli di Zucca ($13.50 I think, I didn't memorize the prices on these). The gnocchi were light, and its tomato basil sauce wasn't overpowering at all. There was a generous sprinkling of parmesan over the top, as well. The ravioli was stuffed with pumpkin and ricotta cheese, topped with a cheese (I can't remember the name of the cheese she told me it was, started with a "t") and cream sauce, with tender duck confit scattered over the top. Both of these dishes were cooked to perfection, brought out at exactly the right moment for not being too hot to eat for too long, and tasted wonderful. They were simple, easy to understand dishes with good combinations that complemented each other.
We asked for and were promptly brought a second basket of bread to sop up the wonderful sauces from these dishes, and we were not charged extra for this (sometimes, some places will do that, bastages! ;).
For secundi we shared the Saltimbocca di Vitello ($19.50), and I decided to try it with the wine they suggested be paired with it, Terradora di Paolo Fiano di Avellino. When we ordered it, we told them we'd be sharing it, so they split it into two plates for us, but there was so much food on the plates that I looked at the man who brought it out and said "This is a shared order? Right?" He assured me it was. I was pleased that they'd split it onto two plates for us, no fumbling around trying to divide it up onto smaller plates from a larger one.
My husband adores veal, and so rarely gets it, and he was overcome with happiness on the first bite. It was tender and tasty, with a wonderful white wine butter sauce that in no way overpowered it. The proscuitto was lightly browned on top of the veal, and the whole thing was very very delicately floured before being cooked. I have -never- had such good saltimbocca, ever, anywhere. It was served with some carrots that had been marinated in white wine, though it tasted like there might have been something more in the marinade, then fried to just soft, not mushy. Also some lovely brocolli, perfectly steamed.
I liked the wine, and realized that I really do enjoy a nice white wine now and then. My husband drove us home, just to be on the safe side, though. :) I can be something of a lightweight though tonight I didn't feel at all tipsy like I normally would after two glasses of wine. I couldn't finish my portion of saltimbocca and it's sitting in a container in the fridge, waiting to delight me once again, though I know it won't be the same as leftovers. :)
Our waitress was attentive without being in the least bit intrusive. Our starters were brought to us by one of the owners (though I didn't know that's what she was at the time), and the other plates were brought by a man who looked like he might be working in the kitchen in some capacity, as he wasn't waiting on tables, exactly. Everyone was just wonderful. As we were leaving, we were thanked several times on the way out, in a way that might have seemed excessive, if they hadn't all seemed so genuine about having been happy to serve us. The staff all seemed very knowledgeable about the food, and the waitress knew the specials cold, without a cheat sheet (something that always impresses me for some reason).
Our entire bill, including the single glass of wine (we otherwise drank water with lemon) was around $87 (before tip).
I now have a new favourite restaurant. This has been a very very lovely day. :) It's been about three hours and I'm STILL stuffed. :)
Oh, and I have the best husband in the world! So There! ;)