Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Ristorante La Perla

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Ristorante La Perla is based on authentic Italian recipes from Chef Vittorio Testa who places emphasis on simple, fresh, quality ingredients and traditional Italian cooking methods. Fresh pastas are made in-house daily, and dried pastas are imported from Italy. Closest Metro is Foggy Bottom.

We were invited in to sample Chef Testa's menu.  We were seated at a table by the window, and were surprised to see the old school decor that exemplified traditional Italian restaurants.  There were replica statues and a fountain, with other knick-knacks and art pieces decorating the room.  A bar was located towards the back.  We imagined most of the clientele to be regulars and those who wanted to dine in Georgetown before catching a show at the Kennedy Center.

All meals are complemented by a selection of hand-made breads baked in-house according to traditional methods.  After we finished eating, Chef Testa gave us a tour of the kitchen and he proudly showed off his bread oven.  He also showed off the clean prep area that makes every order 'a la minute' to ensure each dish is presented at its utmost freshest state.  This attention to detail did not slow down service as one might assume, but rather highlighted the care put into each dish providing a very quality meal.

To start off, we shared an appetizer special of Clams Casino.  Little clams were topped with spicy tomato sauce, breadcrumbs, onions, and bacon and then baked.  We happily ate these little guys and could have easily eaten another half dozen.

We also shared the Mozzarella di Bufala Caprese with Prosciutto.  Fresh imported buffalo mozzarella was served with sliced tomato, fresh basil and virgin olive oil. The addition of prosciutto provided that extra bit of salt to round out the classic salad.

There were too many enticing options on the menu - various pastas, seafood, veal, and chicken dishes.  I had a very hard time choosing one, but went with the Pappardelle del Presidente as it was recommended by our server as being one of his favorites.  This dish did not disappoint, and is a special creation by Chef Testa featuring sautéed lobster meat, shrimp, and jumbo lump crab meat tossed in a saffron, mascarpone cheese and champagne cream sauce served with large fresh fettuccine.  The seafood was plump and generously piled on top.  I used some of the crusty Italian bread to soak up the remaining intoxicating sauce.

Keith ordered another original creation by Chef Testa called Vitello Marianna Scalfaro (First Lady of Italy). Tender veal was topped with jumbo lump crab meat, asparagus, and mozzarella cheese, sautéed in an exquisite lemon, butter and white wine sauce.  The veal was pounded thin allowing the star of this dish to be the crab meat.  The asparagus stalks were super thick, shocking me, as I bought my own asparagus from the grocery store the day before which looked like toothpicks compared to these.  Keith could really taste the wine in the sauce, and enjoyed this dish all in all.  At first he wanted some pasta of his own to accompany the veal, but after eating the entire dish, he was satisfied with it just as it was presented.

Lastly for dessert, we shared a slice of Marble Mousse Cake.  The layers of white and dark chocolate mousse were delicate and provided the prefect sweet ending to our meal.

Overall, we were very pleased with the fresh food that highlighted quality ingredients in a mix of creative and traditional Italian flavors.  There were many other items on the menu that I want to try, and we both agreed we would definitely come back to La Perla to dine with family.  To finish out, we were presented with a shot of limoncello, which is customary in many Italian restaurants.  The white table cloths, and tuxedo-clothed servers provided that classic old school atmosphere.  Service was excellent and Chef Testa was seen greeting guests often throughout the night.  If you're looking for time-honored treatment with a fine Italian meal, check out Ristorante La Perla in Georgetown.

Total Rating: 4.18
Food: 4.5, Price: 3.5, Service: 4.5, Ambience: 3, Accessibility: 5
What Micky Eats...

 What I ate:
Clams Casino

Mozzarella di Bufala Caprese with Prosciutto
fresh imported buffalo mozzarella layered with sliced tomato, fresh basil and virgin olive oil

Pappardelle del Presidente
large fresh fettuccine, sautéed lobster meat,shrimp, jumbo lump crab meat, saffron,
mascarpone cheese and a champagne cream sauce

Marble Mousse Cake

Plus Keith ate:
Vitello Marianna Scalfaro (First Lady of Italy)
tender veal with jumbo crab meat, asparagus, & mozzarella cheese,
sautéed in an exquisite lemon, butter and white wine sauce

Ristorante La Perla of Washington DC on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

  1. The sauce on Pappardelle del Presidente looks very creamy! I think it can even survive on its own even without the pasta as a soup. Haha! Anyway, I hope you continue sharing great posts like this in the future. Cheers!

    Chris Carpenter@ DomenicosMonterey


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