With considerable trepidation, I went to Via Veneto on Main St. in SM last night with a friend for her birthday. I needn't have worried--it was a perfect meal. We split an artichoke/shaved parmesan salad to start, moved to soups (tuscan bean and minestrone), with veal ravioli with mushroom sause and rigatoni arrabiata for mains. Desserts were a chocolate tart--softish, walnuts in the crust and powdered sugar on top, not too sweet, could only be Italian, and a chocolate "truffle"--a good-sized ball of chocolate ice-cream with hazelnuts,soft cream in the center. The ravioli was rich and silky, the best I have tasted in years; everything else was likewise fresh-tasting and unhumdrum. With four glassses of wine, the bill came to $125--not cheap but a better value than the so-so dinner I had at Angelini on Friday night. Also miles better than Peppone two-three weeks ago.
Via Veneto was packed and noisy, but we could hear each other talk across the table without much effort which is all one can ask these days I guess.
Anyway, highly recommended.