Trattoria San Vivaldo
After reading and hearing about this place for literally years, I finally had the pleasure of dining here Friday evening. Chef Alfie and George were welcoming and accommodating hosts. As we expected, no menus or wine list were offered. Chef simply told us what was available that evening.
Dining here was like eating at your Nonnie's house. We each had an antipasto plate that included a stuffed pepper, fritatta, bruschetta and lightly dressed mixed greens. Entrees included chicken braised with cabbage, currants and raisins, a variation of beef stroganoff, veal and peas and pasta puttanesca. Everything was delicious. With dessert, espressos, lots of wine and a good tip, total was about $60 per person, very reasonable.
With all the great reviews, we were surprised the place wasn't busier. Chef said the poor economy had taken a toll on the business. I hope those of you who've enjoyed this place in the past will pay it another visit and those of you who haven't tried it will give it a shot.
We went last night with friends. We hadn't been in a couple of years. We brought a couple with us for their first visit. We were the only table early on Saturday evening. Chef mentioned the struggles with the economy. He had a helper, George, working with him. Chef and George had a friendly and entertaining back and forth conversations throughout the evening. The food was wonderful. We each had an appetizer with a salad, bruschetta, stuffed zucchini and a piece of frittata. It was a wonderful way to start off the evening. As expected, there was no menu. Chef had a conversation with us about what he had in the kitchen and how he could prepare it. I couldn't decide between two of the entree options so I had one, beef spare ribs (melt in your mouth, fall off the bone and delicious), and he gave me a small plate of the bolognese over ravioli as a side plate so I didn't have to choose. My husband couldn't decide between chicken and veal so chef gave him some of each in the entree he had. Our dining companions both had pasta dishes. Everyone was incredibly happy with the food. For dessert, chef brought out four different desserts, all housemade, for us to share. The lemon cake was my favorite. There was also a warm and delicious fruit tart and a cannoli. I can't remember the fourth dessert. As we were wrapping up our entrees, another couple came in, obviously for the first time. They had looks of surprise and amusement on their faces. As we left around 8, the place was picking up a little. It looked like Chef and George were making room for a party of ~8 people. Chef had a bunch of vegetables and herbs growing outside the restaurant. He told us about his greenhouse at home where he grows herbs for use in his cooking year round. It looks like he is adding on a small space, maybe pushing out the bar. I couldn't tell, as the work was in the early stages. I really need to not stay away from this place for as long as I have. The food is amazing and the place and experience so unique and dare I say, entertaining. Hounds, please visit and please bring your friends. It would be a huge loss for a place like this to not stick around.
Total bill was around $170(before tip). This was for four appetizers, four entrees, my little side of pasta, a bottle of wine, bottle of sparkling water, one mixed drink, two coffee, one espresso and four desserts. This is just over $40 a person. A bargain for the amazing quality of food.
Went again Friday night. We were the only customers, other than one pizza to go. Don't know how he stays in business and worry he won't for long. The attention to detail, overall experience and food-homemade mozzarella and homemade orangecello were standouts-were amazing as always.