I was very excited to try Perbacco last Thursday night. I have hear about it and I was also anxious to try a new restaurant, I feel like I have been frequenting the same ones over and over as opposed to venturing out to new establishments. The first thing I dove into was the bread sticks and herb dip/tapenade that they had one the table. Apparently the entire staff makes over a thousand of these crunchy snackers every day. At least that is what someone at my table said. I can imagine that it would take the entire staff to handroll all these sticks. But it is well worth it. They were not at all similar to the tough/brittle and tasteless breadsticks of my youth. The ones I particularly remember are from Perry's in Tiburon (now the Piatti space). We used to dip the sticks into the ramekin of saltless butter. I would always try to convince my parents to let me order a Roy Rodgers or a Shirley Temple as well, a rare treat for the ten year old me. Anyway, back to 2008.
After I had sufficiently demolished 4 too many breadsticks and the majority of the herb/olive oil mix in front of me (definitely eating more than my share!) we were served my new favorite dish. Raviolo all'uovo. This was incredible. A warm raviolo (ravioli is plural, since there was only one, it is a raviolo) stuffed with ricotta, spinach and a perfectly cooked egg. And I absolutely love a runny yolk. I should have taken a picture of it when I cut into it and the yolk drizzled out, but I was too busy consuming at that point. Oh, and it was topped with truffle oil. Mmmmm, hungry just thinking about it.
We were then served a roasted red and gold beet and arugula salad. It was served with a Castelmagno cheese, which is a semi hard cheese from the Piedmont region of Italy. It reminded me a bit of a ricotta salata, but it's been a few days, so maybe I am off on this. The salad was nice, nothing to rave about. But this could also be because I had just eaten one of the best appetizers ever, so anything would be a bit of a disappointment after that.
There were two options for the main course. A seafood risotto, which I did not choose, and a pan roasted chicken with mushroom jus and herb roasted gnocchi.
I had a bite of the risotto and I will admit, it looks a lot prettier than it tasted. I think if it had been executed properly perhaps my review might be different, but it was undercooked so it was a bit crunchy almost. Not the correct texture for risotto.
The chicken was lovely. It was moist and tender and the gnocchi was out of this world. I don't think that it was traditional gnocchi, more like soft pillows of flavor. Magnifique! I thought I wouldn't have any room for dessert, but somehow I managed to consume an entire piece of the peach raspberry crostata. It was well worth it. Besides feeling like I weighed 500 pounds for the rest of the evening and the next day, Perbacco was absolutely wonderful and I am looking forward to my return visit.