Fashion Island, Newport Beach,
Orange County, California
Suffice to say, being the parents of 3 year old twins, we don’t often time for a ‘date night’ meal. Especially one that is 11,000kms away. However, sometimes you have to go the distance, to make these things happen!
Blame it on the jet lag, or the rose tinted glasses of a few days of ‘twinlessness’, but I still believe Cucina Enoteca was one of the best dining experiences that Hubby and I have ever had.
From our wonderfully attentive waiter (Andy), who intelligently answered all our questions (of both the food and wine), all while deciphering our thick NZ accents, to the quirky decor, funky ambience and interesting toilet wishes (more about that later), this was a 5 Star, A+, top quality meal.
And, I haven’t even touched on the food or wine yet.
The wine selection was huge and as an added bonus, you could purchase a bottle from their retail store and consume it (for a small corkage fee) with your meal.
As a vegetarian, I was impressed with the unique options available on the menu. We began our evening with the artichoke and truffle hummus, which was served in a mason jar, and so delicious, we had to order more bread.
The mushroom bolognaise was an outstanding dish – and I’m sure a meat eater wouldn’t have even realised it was vegetarian.
Hubby opted for one of the signature dishes (short rib pappardelli) and wasn’t disappointed. Both meals were perfectly portioned and went well with our local Zinfandel.
We were having such a great evening that we even indulged in dessert, which we are usually too full to enjoy.
We shared the torta della nonna – pinenut and blackberry prosecco sorbet with lemon sago – absolutely scrumptious.
No trip to this restaurant is complete without visiting the ladies toilet. As another quirky touch, a wish board awaits. You can write your hearts desire on a small piece of paper and tuck it into a frame with all the other wishes.
The staff delight in reading these wishes from time to time, so being the curious girl that I am, I had to find out what the most interesting wish they had seen was. Apparently, “I wish that my cheating husband contracts Ebola” is at the top of the list…
We can not wait to move to California, so we can enjoy this dining experience again. Oh, didn’t I tell you that we will be setting up house in the OC in the not too distant future? Well, that adventure might just be the next blog that I embark on…