Sprezza, Dallas, 8/22/16

Building
Building

Sprezza is a large place that has been open since the end of April. It got lots of hype due to chef Julian Barsotti being the man behind the food, as he has been responsible for well regarded Nonna.  However if this is how he imagines the food of Rome to taste, he needs to visit there again. Overall it left a non-impression, as the flavors were mild in everything except the nice spicy pepper to sprinkle on your pizza. Portions are small and meant for sharing which makes it nice to have lots of bites of different things.

entry
entry
interior
interior
open kitchen
open kitchen
menu
menu
wine list
wine list
table set up
table set up
Frankie liked the plates
Frankie liked the plates
wine
wine

 

We started with the fried zucchini which was topped with pecorino (a standard for every dish). It was nicely done with a perfect crispness and not greasy. It could have benefitted from a dipping sauce to give it more taste than fried coating. The lemon which was the stated adornment was one really small slice and barely dotted most of the pieces.

Fried Zucchini with lemon
Fried Zucchini with lemon
Faux wiring on the walls?
Faux wiring on the walls?
Frankie watched the cars go by at the window by our table
Frankie watched the cars go by at the window by our table

 

The escarole salad was nicely fresh but more outside leaves than the stronger tasting interior ones which made it another good but mild dish.

Escarole, roasted cherries, walnuts, pecorino
Escarole, roasted cherries, walnuts, pecorino

 

The Fritto again was a nice job by the fryer and the shishitos were tasty but the dish had no wow factor even though it was fine.

Fritto: calamari, shishitos, green tomato, cucumber
Fritto: calamari, shishitos, green tomato, cucumber
another angle
another angle
Frankie couldn't decide what to go after
Frankie couldn’t decide what to go after

 

The pizza was a very thin crisp crust with no puffy edge. The sausage has a nice spiciness and the tomatoes quite sweet, so the overall affect was good but I couldn’t help thinking it could have been so much better.

Pizze Al Taglio: Fennel sausage, cherry tomato, caciocavallo, chili
Pizze Al Taglio: Fennel sausage, cherry tomato, caciocavallo, chili
closer
closer
Frankie liked the hotness of the pepper
Frankie liked the hotness of the pepper

 

The traditional Roman pastas was where I was really crushed. Both shapes were odd but did hold the sauce very well.  However neither of the pastas was cooked a perfect al dente. The carbonara sauce had broken so it was more gritty than creamy goodness and it was accented with strings of onions that just felt out of place.  The Mafalda is a really weird shape that seemed more like the scraps of some other pasta than a designated shape. The bits of pancetta were quite tasty but few and far between and the red sauce made me think of a canned variety.  We chose not to order dessert.

Conchiglie carbonara: guanciale, pecorino, egg, pepper
Conchiglie carbonara: guanciale, pecorino, egg, pepper
Mafalda: pancetta, tomato, pecorino, chili
Mafalda: pancetta, tomato, pecorino, chili
Frankie preferred the red pasta
Frankie preferred the red pasta
interior
interior
more prep area
more prep area
Frankie climbed the decoration in the bathroom
Frankie climbed the decoration in the bathroom
counter label
counter label
Waitress Kristin and Frankie
Waitress Kristin and Frankie

 

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