La Pentola (Dine Out 2016)
The 14th annual Dine Out Vancouver Festival kicked off with the largest number of restaurants to date (288). Of course, one of the drawbacks to Dine Out is due to its popularity… often overcrowded, rushed, and with food quality that doesn’t always meet expectations. That’s why it’s important to understand what your goals are at Dine Out and to pick an appropriate restaurant. Our pick for our first Dine Out 2016 restaurant was La Pentola – located in the boutique Opus Hotel in Yaletown.
We’ve never been to La Pentola before and I enjoy getting to try new restaurants during Dine Out. We arrived a little early for our 6pm seating and were fortunate to receive an intimate table in the corner. I liked that the seating wasn’t too cramped. While they gave us a 2-hour seating, we didn’t feel rushed at all during our meal and service was friendly.
While La Pentola offered a 4-course Dine Out menu for $40, they also offered a 5-course and 7-course “Alla Famiglia” (family-style) menu, as well as their usual à la carte menu. We decided on sticking with the regular Dine Out menu… but first came the complimentary crusty bread with olive oil. We were almost finished with our bread when they came by and gave us another serving of bread without us asking. Water service was just as attentive and our glasses were constantly being refilled.
For our appetizers, we picked the Carne Salada and the Butternut Squash Salad. The thinly sliced beef eye of round was fantastic and was served with white beans, charred onions, juniper aioli and peppercress.
The poached and roasted squash was served with frisse, balsamic, pickled onions, and whipped ricotta cheese.
Our next course was the pasta selection. While they didn’t look like huge servings, the bowls were deep and we started to feel very full after finishing these plates.
The Bucatini all’amatriciana was served with smoked pork jowls, slow cooked onions, chilies, tomatoes, and pecorino cheese. Bucatini is like a thick version of spaghetti and I enjoyed the toothsome texture as I bit into it.
The Taglierini, which is like a thinner version of tagliatelle, was served with clams, basil, and herbed bread crumbs in a spicy arabbiatta sauce.
Our second main course consisted of Grilled Hangar Steak and Wild Sockeye Salmon.
The hangar steak, one of the more flavourful and tender cuts, was covered with an ample amount of arugula, balsamic, pine nuts and parmesan cheese. I had to move it aside to get a picture of the steak underneath. I wasn’t able to finish all of the leafy arugula, but the hangar steak lived up to they hype…
The sockeye salmon was served with crispy beet chips, radishes, and asparagus. By this point, the pasta and the complimentary bread had really taken a toll on us and we were quite stuffed.
Still, we couldn’t finish off our Dine Out meal without dessert… The Chocolate Bonet was served with brandied cherries (which I wasn’t a big fan of). But the dark, smooth, and creamy chocolate was quite good and would satisfy any chocoholic. The bonet had the consistency of crème caramel.
The Lemon Cream was perfectly light, creamy, and offset by the flavour of the poached blueberries.
Overall, our Dine Out experience at La Pentola was great and I’d really enjoy coming back here again.
350 Davie Street
Posted on January 17, 2016, in Italian, Restaurant Review and tagged Carne Salada, Chocolate Bonet, Dine Out Vancouver 2016, Food, Italian, Lemon Cream, Opus Hotel, Pasta, restaurant review, Vancouver, Yaletown. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.