Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Dining Out: Vincoloa Benanti at Farina

One of my favorite spots in The Mission is Farina. Last night we dined there for their Vincoloa Benanti: Unique Wines from Sicily wine dinner.
Dining Out: Farina
This month my husband and I have been spoiled -- not one, but three dinners out. October is a big month in our house: our wedding anniversary and cubes' birthday. cubes' birthday is tomorrow, so last night's dinner at Farina was an early celebration.
We've primarily been drinking red wine lately, so we considered the two offered reds: a 2005 Rovitello and a 2000 Serra Della Contessa. (We did the same at Farina's last winemaker's dinner.) Our waiter brought us tastes of each; we selected a bottle of the Serra Della Contessa. Both reds had a hint of spice, the one we chose had a more nuanced finish.
cubes and I opted to split two appetizers, a pasta course, and a main dish. We usually order way too much food, so this approach was a first for us at Farina. The meal started with Flori di zucca ripeni con carciofi alla Romana (fried zucchini blossoms in Meriabrea beer batter filled with anchoives and buffalo mozzarella and artichokes Roman style). The batter had almost a tempura feel to it; it was light, with crispness.
For our second antipasti, we chose Tartare di tonno con insalata di fregola (Ahi tuna tartar dressed with olive oil and lemon juice, paired with fresh fregola salad). Farina serves their Tartare with a twist, on a bed of cous cous. When mixed with the tuna and fregola the contrast in textures was refreshing. A very nice presentation.
Dining Out: Three of our Four Courses at Farina
I was especially excited about the pasta course. I love Farina's duck and wild boar. The Papperdelle di saracena al sugo d'anatra e rossue (hand made buckwheat flour long pasta tossed with a slow braised duck meat, white wine and lobster mushrooms) did not disappoint.
For the main dish, I wasn't sure what to expect. Fish stew conjured images of Cioppino or Thai Fisherman Soup. The dish presented to us was nothing like either of those preparations. The broth was light, yet, packed with a lot of flavor. This is a dish I definitely want to try to make at home!
We left Farina pleasantly full with no left overs (what typically happens). It was a relatively warm evening for San Francisco so cubes and I enjoyed a leisurely walk home. Boy has the Valencia corridor between 18th and 20th changed since we moved. Tons of new restaurants to try; motivation for a regular date night.
Do you have anniversaries and birthdays around the same time?
How do you do keep each special?
Bon Appetit!
Credits: All layouts designed by and images taken by Eden Hensley Silverstein for The Road to the Good Life.