A very pleasant, surprisingly larger space than you can tell from the street. You feel comfortable right away with this place and its multiple dining areas. We asked and were granted a table in the East courtyard/patio which was the smaller of the two. We got there earlier than our reservation, and were seated relatively quickly (once they put the handle on the door leading out to the patio...it fell off mid-turn). Service was gracious and unpretentious.
I started with the ill-described Panelle, which is listed as Chickpea Fritters with Goat Cheese and Sicilian Caponata. Be warned, they call it "chicken" fritters on MenuPages.com, which is completely incorrect, but my comment is more toward the dish itself. The highlight and main item of this dish is the Caponata, not the fritters. The caponata, made with perfectly ripe eggplant, golden raisins, pine nuts, tomato and some other great additions. This is a great alternative to tuna tartare, which is pretty much the same when displayed and the mouthfeel is somewhat similar too. This was very good, and could become a fun summer dish to make at home. The chicken fritters were unmemorable, as was the cheese in between the 2 pieces.
My dad had the Zuppa Manilla Clams and Mussels in a Cherry Tomato Broth and said they were fantastic. Mom skipped the apps.
Per recommendations from the board, I suggested the rabbit to my father and I went ahead and ordered the Malloreddus Sardinian Dumplings with Homemade Ground Sausage and Saffron. Mom ordered the Tonnarelli: Thick Spaghetti with Seafood and Light Tomato Sauce. She loved it, but I found the dish to be overwhelmed with the taste of scallops (as opposed to a mix of the seafood).
Unfortunately, the rabbit was okay, according to my dad. The sauce was weak, however he noted that the broth in his appetizer was fantastic. He was perplexed at how one could be so good and the other not.
My pasta dish was very good. I cannot say that it bowled me over - simply because I cooked a Tagliatelle Bolognese dish, slightly edited, from the NY Times Magazine (recipe) a week or so ago that was out of this world. Its not often I, with my limited cooking skills, can create my own benchmark for a particular food. It was very good and I'm now more interested in trying out Babbo to see a comparison.
We ordered 3 cheeses for dessert and wished we hadn't. The pieces of cheese were smaller than average for a place like this, and the triangular crackers they gave us were useless. They cracked into pieces when you picked them up and had a flavor to them reminiscent of Goldfish crackers. VERY DISAPPOINTING. I was shocked at how poor their cheese service was. Will never try that dish again at this place. Amazingly bad. The Roquefort was too young, and was still the only really good cheese we had. What a crappy way to end the meal.
All in all, I Trulli was good. I'd give it a B-. I will probably return (its practically next door to my place) but not after I see what else is out there.
Its not worth running to get to this place anytime soon and whatever you do...avoid getting the cheese plate.