Another fantastic evening at Babbo

What can I say?  My friends won the bid at the LREI auction at year ago for this Babbo dinner, again, and we chipped in to participate.  Although we certainly knew what to expect, in some ways it makes it even better.  Pace yourself.

We started in the wine cellar which is in the basement of Babbo.  Slices of salami straight from Mario’s dad.  Delicious.  Babbo has a room where they keep the salami before serving.  We had prosecco and/or pomegranate Bellini’s.  The cellar is intimate with two huge moose heads hanging on the walls. 

We then proceeded to the dining room.  There is a small room which seats 10 people comfortably.  There is something medieval about the room.  Surrounded by brick, in the basement but it is really cool. 

The first course are culatello ( a type of cured meat ) with braised ramps ( tis the season ) and shaved pecorino cheese.  The perfect Italian kick off.  The ramps made the whole thing.  This was served with a white wine from Liguria that had body to it.   If you like pasta, mushrooms and butter, you really can’t go wrong with the second course.  Pappardelle with morels, thyme and lots of butter and olive oil.  Of course, with some shaved parmigiana right before eating over the top.  Delicious and rich served with a chardonnay from Alto Adige. 

Another pasta came as our third course.  Small rich duck tortelli with a very heavy red sauce over the top.  This particular sauce is called the Sunday sauce.  It hangs out all day and there is a little bit of lardo put in at the end to really enhance the taste.   Served with a red wine from Lazio. 

My favorite was next.  Sliced pieces of medium rare pork with a barlotto verde (green spicy salsa) and a caper vinaigrette.  Delicious.  The balance of all the flavors were sublime.  Fred kept talking about it the next day.  Served with another red from Sicilia.  I have never been to Sicily but Mario was giving Sicily a thumbs up on a new place to explore.

The next three were dessert oriented.  The first was a small round tortellini filled with a fruity custard and a mixture of chopped fruit on the top.  A real palette cleanser and different.  Served this with a nice dessert wine from Sicily. 

Classic chocolate tartufino.  Vanilla ice cream covered in chocolate.  One of the best tartufinos I have ever had served with one of my favorite dessert wines, Vin Santo from Toscanny.

Last out were four different desserts which were passed around as we all took a bite.  Banana walnuts olive oil cake, cheese cake, something else chocolate and one other goodie.  Here they served grappa which I stayed clear of.  After all the liquor I have already consumed, one sip of the grappa I was afraid my stomach would go up in flames.

The food was fantastic, the company was wonderful.  A really special experience and you really can’t beat Babbo.