As a banquet guest here this week, it was apparent why Vivande has fallen off the chow radar. Nothing of the savories invited a return visit. For our large group, it was a pity that no pastas were served, the strength of the house.
But things turned around when the dolci came out. Lovely light and airy Brutti ma Buoni cookies whipped of egg whites, sugar, and an abundance of toasty hazelnuts and almonds were so fresh and beautifully nuanced, I started to pay attention to my food again.
Then the Cannoli alla Siciliana kicked it up a notch. Fresh-filled to order with barely sweetened cows milk ricotta studded with orange and lemon peel candied in-house, the pastry tubes were ultra-crackly and flaky. One end was dipped in shavings of Guittard bittersweet chocolate and the other in unsalted chopped pistachio nuts. Im not a cannoli connoisseur myself, but the look of ecstasy on the face of Giuseppe who arrived from his native Sicily two days earlier and the satisfied sighs emanating from Mariangela who schooled in Boston confirmed my own appreciation for this bit of deliciousness. I flagged down a server to confirm that the cannoli is offered on the regular menu. I knew I had to have this again, and I can for $6.95 any day.
Vivande Porta Via
2125 Fillmore St.
San Francisco 94115