Osteria Stellina, Pt. Reyes Station
Didn't find its own thread, started this one. Unfortunately, wish I could tell you we had a great meal here but we didn't.
Our friends from NJ were staying at Nick's Cove, we drove down to pick them up and went to Stellina.
Seated and started to look at the menu. It reads well with a nice array of choices. We started with Warm citrus marinated olives which were fine but “Beans & Greens” -rosemary simmered cannellini beans and braised greens were over cooked and mushy. Our final starter was a pizza, Drake’s Bay Family Farms oysters, braised leeks, parsley and lemon thyme. I love Neapolitan style pizza and respect the middle can be soggy but this entire pizza was wet and mushy, difficult to even get on a plate. The real kicker is that the flavor was surprisingly bland.
Entrees were two pastas, pappardelle with lamb ragu and orecchiette with sausage and broccoli rabe. Two huge bowls of pasta with virtually no lamb ragu or sausage and broccoli rabe.
Other two entrees were a mediocre tasting salmon and a very good braised lamb with fingerling potatoes.
Decided to skip dessert. The four of us had heard great things about Stellina but our meal was a total disappointment from start to finish.
re: Melanie Wong
Another point of data. I had a mid afternoon snack at Nick's Cove this week. Clam chowder was OK, no better. The raw oysters were OK, but the least tasty among the five places I sampled Oysters. The friend I was riding around with got the crab mac & cheese. Not sure how to judge it as I thought it sounded like a bad idea. Tasting it didn't really change my opinion, though it was better than I would have guessed. A nice selection of wines by the half bottle, though.
I ate dinner there a few weeks ago & didn't have time to post right then. My dinner was mixed, some good & some meh. I thought maybe I ordered wrong.
I got 2 salads & a side of beans & greens. One salad featured pears that were overpowered by other strong flavors in the salad. The other salad was watermelon & I liked it a lot better. The beans & greens was so oversalted that I sent it back. The second try was better but nothing I couldn't make at home with little effort & some really good olive oil; I had hoped they would do something at least a little more interesting with it.
Overall impression: just okay.
Service was good though.
We had a disappointing dinner two years ago and haven't been back since because we didn't feel anything merited a return visit. We over ordered: several pastas, pizza to share, salads and various seasonal greens prepared different ways. It was all pretty mediocre and nothing we couldn't have whipped up better ourselves at home. Wine list was good however. I also found the space (dining room itself) uninspired, for lack of a better word. Neither my wife or myself were fond of the atmosphere.
Had dinner Friday night. Started with a spring minestrone in chicken broth, light and delicate, which was perfect since we wanted to save our appetites for pasta.
Got orecchiette with veal ragù and bucatini alla carbonara. Both pastas were a bit less al dente than I'd like and severely underseasoned, both tasty once we corrected the salt. The bread could have passed for Acme levain but was actually Brickmaiden, so I guess they've gotten a lot better than the last time I tried their stuff.
Shared a charcoal-roasted quail, nice light finish after the generous helpings of pasta.
Interesting, mostly Italian wine list. Drank a reasonably priced Rossesse and a glass of the house red on tap that was a very nice old-school Cal-Italian field blend.
Good service, comfortable space, overall excellent experience. I want to go back and try the pizza.
Went back for lunch. Tuscan tripe stew with chickpeas and wild mushroom pizza bianca with roasted red peppers were both very good. Gulf shrimp with house-made cocktail sauce were excellent. Tuna confit with cannellini was a bit heavy on the tuna for my taste.