Looking Forward to Our Next Meal at Altura
We were blown away by our first meal at Altura. The kitchen is open: you may choose to sit at a table or at the counter where you can watch the staff prepare the food. The evening started out with a small complementary beverage: orange juice cut with some sort of nonalcoholic bubbly and bitters. Very refreshing and tasty. Then came another amuse bouche--an absolutely stunning cold melon soup. If I'd had a big bowl of that and some of the restaurant's delicious bread for dinner, I would have been happy. For my real first course, I had a peach/melon/prosciutto/arugula salad. The sweetness and juiciness of the peach and the melon paired perfectly with the nutty bitterness of the arugula and the salty richness of the prosciutto. A real winner. My husband had the tomato soup with mozzarella and sliced heirloom tomatoes. The soup, also cold, brought out the best in the flavor of the beefsteak tomatoes. Very satisfying. Next, I had tagliatelle with crab, guanciale, tomatoes,and basil. The tagliatelle was homemade and the dish came piping hot to the table. The pasta was tender yet toothsome and the flavors of the fresh Dungeness crab married well with the tomatoes, basil and bits of guanciale. My husband had gnocchi with lamb and wagyu beef ragu. The gnocchi were heavenly light and the ragu was the richest and meatiest we'd ever had. For our entrees, I had rabbit five ways with green and yellow string beans. My plate had rack of rabbit (teensy little ribs), rabbit kidney (surprisingly yummy), deep fried rabbit liver (not a liver fan, but for liver, it was good), and two white meat dishes, one rolled up in cooked radicchio and one sausage style. Quite delicious. My husband had Iberico pork with figs. The pork was a bit tough, but the flavor was very good and was highlighted by what we took to be Iberian ham. So yummy! For dessert, I had a delicious apple/huckleberry crostata with a scrumptious pine nut brittle gelato. My husband had a chocolate truffle cake with marzipan stuffed cherries. The cherries were pure delight. The cake, somewhat to my husband's disappointment, was a real cake, not a torte, but was good nonetheless. Coffee was excellent, as was the service. Not being big drinkers we each ordered a glass of red wine--following the waiter's excellent recommendations. Another big plus: the noise level is quite moderate, at least when we were there! If you don't sit at the counter, ask for the table between the window and the salad/dessert prep area. We look forward to returning to Altura--the menu changes every week. Highly recommended.