Local is a fairly large place with very modern design. Wood beams in the ceiling are opposite the place’s logo made into the terrazzo floor. Many items also worked in the circular logo including coasters and seals on the toilet paper. Bare wood tables are appointed with some bench seating and chairs. No music was in the background until later in the evening and the lighting is lowered. A counter area fills much of the first room that’s underneath portion is made of woven wood and it has a few seats that would have the best view through the window into the kitchen. It also had windows to the street outside. A second room for seating led into the bathrooms and window to the large wine cellar. Service was friendly, helpful and they spoke good English. They have an a la carte menu but we had pre-ordered the surprise tasting menu, which was not available in printed form. The menu had good pacing and portion control.
We started with a glass of proseco while they brought out a set of 3 snacks – crispy bread topped with a sardine, baccala burger and chip with veal tendon, onion and porcini. The sardine was very fresh and mild and paired nicely with the crisp bread topped with pine nut butter. It was good. The baccala (salted cod spread) sandwich was a really tall bit to get a bite off. The fish was creamy and contrasted nicely with the toasted top side of the bun. A bit of lettuce completed the sandwich to yield a good bite. The crispy chip was not as crisp as it should have been but the dots of ingredients were tasty with the onion being particularly sweet.
Mushroom dashi was next made with shiitake and seaweed. It was a really well flavored beige broth which unfortunately I consumed before I go a photo. Sorry, the smell was too inviting.
Bread service was a rustic sour dough round that was made in house and served with olive oil. It had a very doughy, dense interior with a good crisp crust. The fruity olive oil was made from a trio of olives and was quite nice. Some breadsticks were also available that were a fun crisp.
Marinated mackerel was paired with red cabbage, mandarin, mayo and mustard. It was a nice combination. The fish was tender and smooth and the cabbage introduced a good amount of texture to pair with it. The various sauces worked well to nullify the strong taste of mackerel.
Scallop with lentils, horseradish and musetto. The tender scallop was cooked perfectly and paired well with the salty, greasy musetto (sausage) that was sliced ultra thin and added a wonderful richness to the scallop. Some of the lentils were made into a purée that was savory like the intact ones.
Baby octopus was mixed with capers, cedar and lemon then covered with potato foam. The foam was luxuriously creamy and almost sticky and went well with the tender octopus. The cedar added a bitter taste that was reminiscent of lemon rind.
Spaghetti with smoked butter, oysters and bergamot included raw oysters that were only cooked by the warmth of the adjacent pasta. The oysters were from Brittany and light and delicate. A lovely sauce graced the perfectly cooked pasta. This was a standout dish and one of my favorites in the evening.
Cauliflower was combined with balsamic vinegar and pine nuts. The cauliflower purée was smoked and really good and topped with the roasted pine nuts and dark beads of balsamic. It had a very smokey flavor.
Wild duck, from the lagoon, was paired with persimmon and purée of local greens. The piece of duck breast was a nice rare and very juicy and tender. It was well flavored and went with the sweet persimmon. It was all crowned with a great, sticky reduction sauce. There was absolutely no liver taste to the duck meat. The greens were ‘broccoli de custoza’ which are special to this area.
A pre-dessert was panna cotto with cynar (Italian amaro made from artichoke leaves). It was very tasty and smooth with a hint of bitter.
Dessert was celery in 3-D, panna cotta celeriac, candied celery and malt and celeriac lovage. Some of the celery was frozen into crystals that really intensified the flavor. It was a good combination of textures.
Final treats were “S” cookies, beignets with pumpkin, chocolate with grappa, meringues. The cookies were nicely crisp as were the meringues. The pumpkin beignets were dull but the chocolates were good.