Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Eating Italian in Santa Barbara

Once again, Via Maestra 42 wins my heart and stomach. This super authentic dish was sinfully divine. Buckwheat pasta, spinach, potatoes (?!), and chunks of melted cheese mixed in. I can't for the life of me remember the name of the cheese, but it was a lot like Gruyere in the sense that it had tons of flavor, quite strong, and melted in the same way. Wow. All in a super light, creamy cheesy sauce.
Via Maestra is located at 3343 State Street.

Olio e Limone is definitely what I consider one of the best special occasion restaurants in Santa Barbara. Beautiful white linens, dark wood, and wine bottles all around, the atmosphere enhances the fine dining experience to come. The wait staff is attentive yet not fussing over your table.
One of my favorite dishes which I seem to order practically every time I eat there is the Mache salad (lamb's lettuce), lightly dressed with lemon and olive oil, surrounded with white anchovies. I love it for its simplicity.
One of the specials that night was Sole beautifully prepared in a lemon, butter, sauce.
Not many places in town serve veal carpaccio...yum...
Even in January we somehow have quite red tomatoes. Fresh mozzarella and vibrant basil, this classic combo never gets old.
As my main course, I enjoyed the other daily special of local halibut served over potatoes and sauteed oyster mushrooms, all covered in a lobster sauce. Quite decadent indeed! I felt the portion was extremely large, but the flavors were quite wonderful.
Desserts flew around the table and included cannolis (a table favorite), a crème brulée, banana chocolate cake, and the pear personal favorite.
I have always and continue to enjoy dining at Olio e Limone. It's more than just going out to eat, you are going to have a wonderful dining experience. Not feeling like a big spender? Their pizzeria next door is insanely satisfying...

Olio e Limone is located at 11 West Victoria Street #17

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