Emi was in town, visiting from Korea.
Took her to one of my favorite restaurants, Drago Centro.
Quite famished and to make this reunion less complicated, we had Chef Celestino Drago’s latest tasting menu, which featured a variety of classic dishes with a twist (of course). It was a leisurely two and half hour dinner where we had a merry good time catching up.
For libations, I had the American Graffiti, a root-beer tasting concoction featured in the “New Classics” section of the Spring/Summer Cocktail menu and highly recommended by a couple of our servers. It was refreshing.
Shortly after, we were presented with amuse bouche (sausage croquette over romesco?)… and began our gastronomic journey…
The first course was a salad comprising of prosciutto, bocconcini mozzarella, and compressed melon. The sweet and savory combination was phenomenal.
The second dish came out in clear plastic baggies that required the server to cut open with scissors, indicating that it was cooked sous vide. On the plate, we were greeted with a healthy piece of white sea bass, mussels, clams, and baby vegetables. It was a very clean dish that left me wanting more. Even the juices from the seafood mixture lent itself to being enjoyed with the table bread. I savored it all to the last bite.
As the sun set, we experienced two of my favorite dishes of the night.
The first (third dish) was a trio of conchiglioni pasta stuffed with snails and coated with herbs, garlic, and brown butter. This was sinfully rich, and though it does not look like much, the portion was perfect.
Whenever I go to Italian places, the experience never feels complete without a taste of gnocchi, whether it be from my order or from a companion’s plate. So, it was to my delight that the fourth dish comprised of crunchy, pillow-soft pork belly, gnocchi, and fava beans in tomato cream. The meal could have ended here and I would have been content.
For the last savory course, we were presented with a perfectly-cooked medium rare lamb chop, panelle, and cipollini onion, over romesco sauce. It was a robust dish full of provincial flavors.
As the moon made an appearance over head, we capped this adventure with delicately ribboned chocolate pudding and rhubarb sorbet. Like everything else that preceded it, delicious.
Link: Drago Centro