Boston Restaurant Blog -- January, 2010
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
Over the past several years, it seems as if I have spent more time in Rhode Island than Massachusetts for New Year's Eve. This is due in part to the fact that I used to go to a terrific place in Providence called Ristorante Romanza until they closed, and now, two out of the last three years I've gone to another cozy Italian spot, this one in Newport, called Sardella's. Now Sardella's will never quite be able to replace the unforgettable Ristorante Romanza, but it is a very nice place in its own right, and just far enough away from downtown so it doesn't get completely mobbed on New Year's Eve.
We have already described Sardella's in a previous blog (go to the New Year's Eve Dinner at Sardella's, Newport, RI post to read our first review of the place), so I won't go into too much detail, but I can say that we were once again impressed by the charm and character of the restaurant. As mentioned in the earlier post, Sardella's is quite big, with several rooms of various sizes, including a beautiful old room with a fireplace (where we ate last time) and an attractive four-season porch along the side (where we ate this time around).
We started our meal with some tasty bread, a couple of glasses of Chianti and Pinot Grigio, and a delicious antipasto that included all kinds of meats (including capicola, pepperoni, and salami), cheeses, and veggies. We also ordered an appetizer of eggplant fries, which were outstanding, with each one having a crunchy exterior and a moist, tender interior, and a slight salty bitterness that I won't soon forget (and the zesty tomato sauce that came with it for dipping was equally good). It took awhile for us to get our dinners, but this wasn't unexpected considering that the place was pretty crowded. Our entrees turned out to be impressive and satisfying, though the rich and creamy gemilini e pollo al fungi (which we tried on our previous visit) was quite a bit better than the somewhat plain campobasso (the prosciutto and garlic did help give that dish some flavor, however, and a helping of grated parmesan cheese enriched up the penne pasta a bit). We had just enough room to share a dessert, and the sweet-tasting tiramisu did not disappoint; indeed, the flavors coming from the rum, coffee, and mascarpone made for a sinfully delightful dish that almost made me want to get another.
It was another fun New Year's Eve at Sardella's in Newport, and perhaps just the first of at least a couple of visits to the restaurant over the coming months. Even though there are so many great restaurants in this historic Rhode Island community, Sardella's will certainly be near the top of my list of places to go while there.
If you would like the address for Sardella's in Newport, here it is: Sardella's, 30 Memorial Boulevard West, Newport, RI, 02840. The phone number is (401) 849-6312.
We returned to Sardella's for New Year's Eve once again, this time having fried mozzarella, a Caesar salad, tortelloni imbriglio (pasta filled with smoked mozzarella and spinach in a roasted red pepper cream sauce), and chicken sorrento (chicken sauteed with tomatoes, basil, and mozzarella over linguini), all of which were top notch. Service was great as well, and prices were pretty low considering it was New Year's Eve.
Posted on 1/5/12
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