Nizza – Like Your Nonna’s Kitchen

As I have said before…Italian food isn’t my favorite food to eat out. Namely, because if I want it, I can make it pretty well at home. Also, it isn’t known for its layers of in-your-face flavor or so-hot-it-makes-your-nose-run spice. I really like those punchy, aggressive flavors. Italian food often seems comforting to me, and I don’t usually dine out for comfort. 
Note the use of the word “usually”
But on a cold, rainy day, after doing some physical exercise(under much duress, I assure you), I just wanted something comforting. Something warm, something familiar, and-preferably-something cheesy.
I wanted lasagna. And I wanted it now. 
 Nizza is a small restaurant that focuses on the food of the Italian Riviera. It is well laid out, casual but not dumpy…
 and there is a really swell looking bar and wine list. But I didn’t have time for that. I needed carbs and I needed them about 15 minutes ago.
 Luckily, our extremely efficient server brought us some bread and olive oil immediately. Ignore the phone-quality pictures, and focus on the fact that this bread was awesome. Greaseless focaccia that was fluffy and soft, but managed to have a delicate crust that was shmeared with Parmesan cheese. The olive oil was a bit too sweet for my tastes, but the bread was so great that it did the trick alone. 
 Nizza’s version of a Caesar salad. I am not a fan of huge leaves of lettuce on a plate. Sure, they might look cool, but it is not that easy to stuff a huge wedge of lettuce into your face without looking like Bugs Bunny. And the plate was too small to use a knife with the lettuce. So the presentation gets a fail-it really did take away from my enjoyment of the salad. This is all quite the shame, because the salad itself was great. A bit oily, perhaps, but it balanced the fishiness and lemony quality of the salad. Far less creamy and salty than I am used to, which I found to be a welcome change from the norm. 
 Wild Boar Lasagna.This arrived to the table STEAMING hot, in the dish in which it was baked. If I had toughed this by accident, I would have been branded.
And the brand would have read “delicious”
Layer upon layer of wide noodle were staggered with slightly gamy, extremely hearty chunks of wild boar in a bolognese that was a TRUE bolognese – all meat and mirepoix with just a touch of tomato paste. The small dices of tender carrots and caramelized onions added sweetness to the sauce and the tomato paste added tang. The creamy bechamel made the boar stand out in it’s meaty intensity, and highlighted the brightness of the vegetables. The pasta was toothsome and the mozzarella was stringy perfection. 
That’s what this meal was-perfection. Well priced, well served, well dined. I would not call this a destination restaurant – it wasn’t THAT well priced – but I must say that it REALLY fit the bill. It was not overly salty or greasy, and by using quality ingredients and cooking them simply, the restaurant produced the food that was what I was craving. And, when ya get down to it…that really is doing a great job. 
And this from a girl who claims she doesn’t eat out for Italian food!
Nizza on Urbanspoon

Comments

  1. Ada says:

    That's so funny, my friend literally told me about this place yesterday! Glad to hear you enjoyed your dinner!

  2. Fritos and Foie Gras says:

    @Ada-haha, love when life works like that! They had some great looking pizzas too!

  3. Beth says:

    This sounds great! Thanks for the review.

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