Friday, May 21, 2010

Coco Lezzone

For my friend, Ray's birthday, him and I went to Coco Lezzone for dinner. I've been there once eons ago, while Ray has been there a couple of times. 

Ray is my best friend and my original food buddy. Back in our university days, I would tempt Ray to skip lectures so we can go for out lunch instead.  We would also venture off to different restaurants around town after class and eat ourselves silly. After university, we discovered fine dining and would go through Winterlicious / Summerlicious meals like they were free. He is now in a different stage in life, and off to bigger and better things, which leaves me, poor me, in a constant search for foodie friends to fill the void he left behind. Anyway, he was able to spare some time out of his hectic schedule a couple of weeks ago so I can treat him for dinner =P

Coco Lezzone is located in the heart of Little Italy on College St. It is a pretty casual Italian restaurant with a patio out front. It also has sliding glass doors that can open all the way to the side for the summer.

The restaurant is long and narrow and seems to stretch forever to the back. Tables fill up the whole place.

We started off with a bottle of Pinot Grigio, our favorite kind of white wine. Ray is actually the person who introduced me to it.

Bread was served with a plate full of olives. I've never been to a restaurant that serves free olives. Great for me because I love olives; Ray doesn't eat them, so bonus for me!

The waiter recommended an antipasto misto, which consisted of olives (more olives!!!), red peppers, artichokes, mushrooms, and a variety of meats. This was average. Nothing out of the ordinary.

Ray highly recommended the Mushroom Risotto. He had it every time at Coco Lezzone and had never ordered anything else. Gotta say this mushroom risotto was indeed very good. It came with wild mushrooms, white truffle oil and parmigiano. The risotto was made perfectly, and the sauce, cheese, and mushrooms blended so well together. I was already stuffed 3/4 of the way through (a very generous portion by the way), but I couldn't resist and finished the whole plate. I was SO FULL.

Ray ordered the Canadian Striploin with caramelized onions in a mixed peppercorn sauce. He said it was really good. I tried a piece, and the meat was indeed very tender. The sauce was also very tasty, definitely not bad considering Coco Lezzone is not a steakhouse.

Although we were both stuffed out of our minds after our entrees, we still had about half a bottle of wine left so Ray suggested getting a cheese plate for dessert instead of the normal sweet stuff. And to be honest, nothing jumped out at me in their dessert menu (i.e. it was the normal things like tiramisu, créme brulée, gelato, and a few cakes). The cheese plate was a great idea since I never order it normally.

All in all, the dinner was pretty good. I loved my Mushroom Risotto and Ray really enjoyed his striploin. The appetizer and cheese plate was nothing out of the ordinary in my opinion. It was great catching up with Ray, and stuffing ourselves like the good old times.

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