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casa verde in pickering/ajax

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I went to Casa Verde Ristorante in the Pickering/Ajax region (on Kingston Road) last Tuesday with the boyfriend, his step sister and husband. It was my first time there, and it seemed like a quaint little *green* (get it, verde?) house all on its own. I reckon its quite old, since the floor boards were quite squeaky. It reminded me of Matignon in downtown Toronto, but I was hoping that it'd be better than that (the vibe I got from Matignon was that it was just so pretentious).

I wasnt that hungry, so I ordered an appetizer--cozze (mussels). The sauce, or soup, that it was in was very flavourful. The mussels itself though, were kinda bad. Some were just not fit to be served on the table. I think out of the whole dish of mussels, I had to sacrifice perhaps 5% of it.

My boyfriend ordered a caprese salad, the gnocchi in tomato sauce with basil, and for dessert--the last slice of ameretto cheesecake. The salad had about 7-8 slices of tomatoes and cheese. The taste of it was amazing (I can never make caprese tastey at home), but they went super skimpy on the cheese. The cheese itself was already small in size (it didnt encompass the whole tomato), yet they cut it sooo thinly that one can not even share the cheese among the whole slice of tomato. The gnocchi was overly bland (the step-sister ordered the same thing, and was overdosing her plate with salt), but the cheesecake was heavenly! Thats one thing I can say thats uber good about the place. They know how to make good dessert. I can taste the ameretto strongly protruding from the cheesecake, and paired with a cappucino at the end, it was just the bittersweet ending to our meal.

The step-sister and husband ordered almost the same thing, but instead of mussels, the husband had a lamb course. It came with veggies and potatoes (I think he had a choice of potatoes or rice). He ordered it rare, and by the looks of it, they made it quite nice and juicy. There was a crust of something, he said, like a mustard seed or something, but it tasted yummy he said.

Service was prompt and good. Dishes were taken away quick, cutlery was replaced quick... no complaints there. All in all, our bill came to $150 with tax and tip, food and beverages. Being more than $30/person, I think I'd rather go Summerliciousing.

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