What a perfect closing night for our visit, to eat with a fellow Texan in the house! Diane and Cesare Benelli opened Al Covo in 1987 after they met and married in the US. He is Italian and the main chef while she is the pastry chef and helps in the front. Both delightful, friendly people, she was thrilled to meet us. How could we not like the place?
All the staff were friendly and helpful and for the most part spoke good English. A bit more on the elegant side for the interior, it was a quiet but bustling room. The crusty bread was excellent and the rice and pea soup absolutely divine. Made with fresh peas you were ‘forced’ to use that crusty bread to wipe the bowl clean. The frittata was lovely with a strong taste of the greens. The baby artichokes were delicious and it was a surprise to find what I thought were potato sticks underneath them were actually slices of the artichoke bottom also delicately fried. The beef was a little drier than I expected but they brought a tasty olive oil to garnish it with and that worked great. Of the sides the potatoes were a standout and the spinach cooked with pinenuts was outstanding, the salad and beans were a bit of a throwaway. The grappa dessert was right up my alley and a perfect ending for a wonderful evening!