Anyone been to D'Amico Kitchen at Chambers yet? [MSP]
We had dinner at D’Amico Kitchen several weeks ago and am just getting around to posting. We had some hits and misses. We started with the spicy calamari. Unfortunately, it was tough and very greasy. The carpaccio was presented beautifully, but I found it to be under seasoned and rather tasteless. We then had the ravioli with buffalo ricotta and goat cheese. This came with a light sauce topped with tomatoes and speck. I did enjoy this combination of flavors. I thought it was well balanced and not too rich or heavy. For my entrée, I had the swordfish and the fish was cooked well. Overall, a nice dish. My SO had braised beef shortribs served with broccoli rabe and gigante beans. He is not much for beans, but he devoured the shortribs. Our friend had the half chicken under a brick and he enjoyed it. For fans of D’Amico Ciucina, I noticed that they serve their signature lobster gnocchi on Fridays.
I just went there last night. I thought it was pretty good with a couple caveats.
The waitress asked if we had ever been there before, and asked if we were celebrating anything special. We were celebrating my friends birthday which was that day and my birthday from last week. She wished us both a happy birthday and then went from top to bottom on the menu recommending one item from each section. There are nine sections, so this took awhile.
Nit pick #1 - what does it mean when the wait staff makes unsolicited blind recommendations? I understand if I have a question or tell them I like this kind of fish, so would I like this entree, etc... but when they just say that for entrees they really like #3, does that mean the other ones are bad? Why are they on the menu then? How do you know I have the same tastes as you? Just don't get it.
We ordered the Zucchini carpaccio because it sounded cool and the spicy calamari. The zuchini carpaccio was interesting with feta cheese and mint, it had a nice zingy flavor, but the portion was microscopic. I'd guess less than 1 oz zucchini comprised of 8 razor thin 3 inch x 3/4" inch pieces. Nice dish but for $8 this seemed like a rip off.
By contrast, the calamari was a nice size portion and equally interesting. No sauces came with but the calamari itself was well flavored with lemon, spice and heat. I think there were little sliced peppers deep fried in there too masquerading as calamari along with parsley, and both added flavor.
I ordered the veal meatball strozzapreti and it was the highlight of the night. There were 3 kinds of veal - thick short wiener type sausages, circular sausages, and what looked like rib meat. There was plenty of the veal to go with the pasta, flavorful red sauce and parrmagean. My friend ordered the mint fazzoletti, which was lamb sausage with a mint-flavored broad noodle along with olives and maybe some other flavorings. When my friend ordered it, I was skeptical and neither of us liked it. The lamb sausage was nice but the combination of everything on the plate did not make for a nice dish. Maybe a more mediterranean palate would like this kind of thing.
The desserts just didn't sound good and we were both full, so we skipped that. However,
Nit pick #2 - waitress asked us if it was a special occasion, we were celebrating both of our birthdays, and no complimentary dessert or anything. Well then why did you ask? I normally do not expect free stuff and I feel a little bad complaining about not getting any, but the waitress made a big deal about our birthdays as we were exchanging presents at the restaurant. Maybe it slipped her mind or maybe they just don't do that.
901 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55403
Ate there Monday night for a business dinner (6 people). Food was EXCELLENT and the service was great...although the restaurant was virtually empty, so anything less would have been an embarrassment.
pizza of the day: excellent, unique vegetarian selection
antipasti: SPICY CALAMARI was excellent. Way too many local restaurants create calamari appetizers with this "spicy" red pepper preparation. D'amico's is definitely unique, and the texture of the calamari is incredibly palatable.
pastas: GARGANELLI CARBONARA (very nice..no cream used to make this carbonara = perfect!), STROZZAPRETI (nicely done veal meatballs...however I'm not sure why they are served in a seperate dish...detracts from the presentation), and RAVIOLI; entrees: BRAISED BEEF SHORTRIB, SUCKLING PIG, PAN ROASTED BEEF RIBEYE (all received rave compliments); desserts: RICOTTA PANNA COTTA and BAKED ALMOND
FRANGIPANE CREPES (delicious!!)
I'd definitely recommend D'amico Kitchen, and plan to go again soon.
I had the pleasure of dining at D'Amico Kitchen again on Saturday night, and had a totally different experience than earlier in the week... the service was EXTREMELY slow, and the Farfalle pasta w/ white wine braised rabbit and peas was mediocre in flavors, while the Braised Short Rib, although nice overall, was a bit salty.
First of all, although we had a reservation and had requested outdoor seatiing, we were seated at the same time as another couple who did not have a reservation, and they were given first pick at a desired table outside. Second...it took about 25 minutes for us to get water...another 20 minutes for drinks...and overall, about 2.5 hours for a 2 course meal. I am a person who enjoys 2-3 hour dinners, but when properly spaced and attended to accordingly.
I am unsure whether I will dine there again. While the weather is nice, however, I think that the outdoor lounge space is the nicest downtown has to offer.
I'd recommend the Carpaccio, Lamb Meatballs & the Risotto with tomatoes and shrimp.
Its certainly not going to replace Alma or Mertiage for me....it's a fun place for a drink and a more reasonable dinner in Downtown Minneapolis
let me just say it again....bathrooms were inexcusably horrible. Wasn't there a bathroom attendant when it was Chambers Kitchen?
I went this weekend - pretty good. Nicely priced. Stuck with the basics.
Carpaccio - excellent. Nicely seasoned etc.
Chowspouse had the lamb meatballs which were excellent
I enjoyed a bite of the cracker crust pizza of the day - which was veal meatball, asparagus and lemon slices? which was billed as "zest" it was odd - and certainly not zestly - but didn't ruin the dish for me.
and I tried a bite of the risotto balls which were just ok.
mains - I had the pasta with fava beans - It was good. My friend had the risotto with tomatoes and shrimp which was excellent. Her husband had the spag & meatballs & my husband had the swordfish. Both seemed to enjoy their meals.
We shared one desert - the chocolate one - it was good.
The service was good, not great. The water delivery was very slow an we frequently had empty glasses but would watch the water girls walk on by. Drink orders took a little longer than one would anticipate as well.
The low light of the evening was the condition of the women's bathrooms. I've visited cleaner porto-potties at the fair.
I'll probably head back at sometime. The bar was fun.