Waltham Chow Alert - La Campagna (Long)
Had an amazing dinner Wednesday night I wanted to share with everyone - this may tread the foodie/chowhound line, but when the food is this good (and honestly, this unexpected) I figure it is worth the risk.
We had a tasting menu, which it appears they do by special request - so I never saw a menu. The waitress assured me that everything we ate was on the menu.
We started off with a seared diver scallop, served over sauteed spinach with a saffron sauce and arugala oil.
We next tried a squid ink risotto, really delicate, perfectly cooked, which had a lobster nage, and some mahognay clams, squid, bay shrimp, and mussels.
The next course was twin pasta dishes, a gnocchi with wild mushrooms, and then a tortelloni the size of a ring ding, filled with meltingly tender braised beef and veal, and sauced with a light cream sauce flavored with pancetta and gorgonzola.
The fish course was brandini or sea bream, they used the fish names interchangeably, baked in a salt crust, filetted tableside, and then re-plated in the kitchen. It was undoubtedly one of the best fish dishes I have ever had, the salt flavor brought out the brine of the fish, and accentuated its sweetness.
The meat courses were both very good and quite well prepared, a crispy duck leg, almost confit-style, although I was not aware that there was an Italian confit. It was very subtle, and very good.
Our last course was a single chop from a rack of lamb, delicious, and perfectly cooked.
The meal was truly impressive, and very well paced so we did not feel rushed or stuffed. The staff was friendly, and parking was a breeze. The next time you are contemplating an Italian splurge, I highly recommend trying La Campagna
Been going to Campagna for a while and personally, I feel it has it all over Il Capriccio and Tuscan Grill. Food, atmosphere, wines are all excellent. Howie Carr of WRKO LOVES it there! I could never figure why no one has realized greatness of this place. Maybe its because it is down Main Street a bit?? Its fantastic.
I'm sorry to be so picky but as an Italian, I have a pet peeve and it's the mispronuciation or misspelling of Italian words and names (bruschetta is pronounced with a k sound, as in school, not a sh sound. Biscotti means more than one cookie so a single cookie is a biscotto).
The restaurant that you so beautifully reviewed is Campania, which is a province in Italy, not La Campagna, which means the countryside.
Campania 504 Main Street,Waltham, MA 02452 781.894.4280
Phew! I feel so much better now.
Maybe its just typing errors vs. pronunciation. Especially since everyone here is typing their thoughts and words. I must say my sister-in-law from Italy mispronounces both English and Italian words. I guess we all can't be perfect, and its whatever our ears hear and eyes see! So, did you like Canpagna?