- Bayareafoodiei Sep 1, 2009 04:50 PM
I have reservations there for Saturday, any comments. Any must haves to try?
I love their mushroom soup in addition to the calamari. But then, I don't think has ever really disappointed me there.
On a slightly unrelated note, anyone know when Peel is opening and where it is? I'm having trouble finding any definite information. First I thought it was supposed to open this month, but I haven't seen anything remotely possible in the areas where it's supposed to be (Linebaugh/Dale Mabry or Lowry Park area).
I returned to Café Ponte for dinner this past weekend after a first and only visit several years ago. Late to make reservations for a Saturday night, my dining partner and I ended up in a booth in the bar/lounge. Because of my extensive business travel, I’m a frequent diner at restaurant bars and usually have no hesitation to eat there. However, at Café Ponte - at least on a Saturday night when there’s live piano music - I’d recommend staying in the dining room. The combination of the piano and the bar blender made the area a bit too noisy for me. Service was adequate, but not notable. The food, however, was definitely enjoyable.
We started with a dinner order of the butternut squash ravioli (with goat cheese, sage, ginger, mascarpone, hazelnut brown butter sauce) that we split as an appetizer. This was great and a fine way to start the meal. The squash, pasta, cheeses, and butter sauce all came together very nicely. This would have been a pretty rich dish for one person to have as their main course, but split for the two of us was very satisfying.
I had the diver scallops (with a short rib sauce, creamy corn polenta, sautéed morel mushrooms and asparagus in a caramelized shallot sauce) which were perfectly cooked – tender, moist, and delicious. Although by mid-meal the mixture of the polenta and sauces started to blend together, losing some of their individual differentiation, the flavors were all well developed.
My dining partner chose the wild salmon (with shrimp-edamame succotash, shitake mushrooms, lobster corn sauce and prosciutto dust), which was a fairly large serving. Although she ordered the fish done medium, in retrospect she probably should have ordered it medium rare or rare, since medium came out a touch dry. She especially enjoyed the succotash and the few sprigs of sprouts on the side of the dish. The prosciutto dust on the top of the filet added just a hint of flavor and worked well with the salmon.
We each had a glass of wine, and the bill came to $98 (with tax, but not tip). If I spent more time in the area, I’m sure I’d be dining at Café Ponte frequently.
13505 Icot Blvd. Suite 214, Clearwater, FL 33760