Friday, January 11, 2008
La Morra, Brookline
My roommate's firm very nicely invited me to their holiday dinner, rounding the list of attendees out to an even 6. I, of course, had to make it 6 1/2 by toting along my camera.
Now, I've had my eye on La Morra in Brookline Village for quite some time, and I would have eventually made a trip there myself had this dinner invitation not come along. The menu, especially, was intriguing, with a more authentic Italian palate than most places, like baccala and game meats.
We started with some items off the cicchetti menu. Cicchetti are bar snacks, served in small portions. We had the arancini stuffed with braised beef and mozzarella, the pickled vegetables, the salt cod crostini, and the fried sage and anchovies. Now, I have to say, I've never been a big fan of salt cod or anchovies, but these were delicious, filled with salty goodness. The arancini were melt-in-your-mouth when they were hot, but started to lose some of their quality as they cooled (as with most fried foods).
Dinner was a hard decision. The pastas sounded wonderful, especially the squash gnocchi with roasted pears and amaretti, but I heeded the steak's siren song instead. The hanger steak was grilled to a redder medium than I would have expected, but tasted fantastic nonetheless. It was served with forgettable potatoes, delicious wilted arugula in a lemony dressing, and a chianti sauce of which I sopped up every last drop.
Chocolate seemed like a good dessert to follow the steak, so I ordered the Torta Caprese, a flourless chocolate almond cake with raspberry sorbet. The cake was good, but wasn't much more than a brownie. But hey, who am I to argue with chocolate? The sorbet was very good, with a bright, fresh raspberry flavor that added depth to the cake.
So after this wonderful dinner (filled with wonderful conversation), I know I'll be back to La Morra soon, to try the gnocchi and some more cicchetti if nothing else.