Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Catie's Favorite Restaurant in Florence

This weekend my parents came to visit Alex and I to see the sights of DC, check out where we live, and spend some time with their second daughter. We went to four museums, spent countless hours on a logiduku puzzle, and had dinner with Alex's parents at Acqua Al 2.

When I moved to DC a few months ago, many of my friends were sweet enough to introduce me to their friends who lived in the District. My friend Catie, was sweet enough to introduce me to Acqua Al 2. 

Catie spent some time during college studying abroad in Italy. When her family visited her, she took them to Acqua Al 2, which quickly became her favorite. When they opened a restaurant in DC, she told me it was a must. I decided to continue the tradition and bring my family when they visited.

Photo borrowed from Bitches Who Brunch

When we arrived, we were greeted by a lovely hostess who had no problem switching our dinner reservation from seven guests to six. We stopped by the bar to grab a drink while everyone arrived. The bartender was sweet, offered great suggestions, and took care of us in a pinch. When our group was assembled we were sat at a cozy table right in front of the open-air kitchen.

Some people don't like being in front of the kitchen, but I do. Not only do you get to see the food being prepared, but you also get to see the staff in action, which for a food blogger can set the stage for either a fantastic or disaster review.

We started with wine, beer, cocktails, the assaggio di formaggio (cheese plate), and three baskets of delicious bread and olive oil. There were two orders of the Cannelloni Ricotta e Spinaci, a spinach and fresh ricotta rolled pasta, baked in a bowl with house-made tomato sauce, topped with b├ęchamel and Parmesan cheese. I tasted most of the dishes ordered and this was truly the best. So rich and creamy, I definitely had order envy. Alex and I shared a steak with arugula and cherry tomatoes and a pasta in a light spinach sauce. All and all the meal was delicious.

The service, was also fantastic. At one point, five of us had received our dinner while my dad's steak was yet to finish. I saw the manager glance our at our table, all of us waiting patiently with our forks down/ He immediately rustled up a prosciutto and  cheese appetizer to serve while my dad's steak was grilled to perfection.

We finished the meal with the lightest cheesecake I've ever had in my life. It was delicious, topped with strawberry sauce that tasted like jam. Heaven.

Catie deserves a huge thanks for the recommendation. We will definitely be back. Next time, probably for a romantic dinner for two.

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