During the school year, I have twenty-three minutes to eat lunch. Therefore anything outside of that is considered a vacation.
So in the spirit of celebrating a midday getaway, Kenny and I caught lunch downtown at Sotto. There, Chef Danny Combs has crafted a brand new lunch menu that satisfies us fans with our favorites, while also surprising us with new twists and pairings. Those used to dining at Sotto for dinner may be accustomed to ordering a number of dishes to share, but for lunch, the options are designed more for individual devouring. And that is precisely what Kenny and I did.
To appease our third-wheel, we ordered some bread and followed that with the goat cheese and hazelnut honey bruschetta for ourselves. Normally I wouldn’t be interested in something seemingly sweet as a starter, but not surprisingly, the goat cheese brought the bite, and the olive oil brushed bread made it a more savory starting place. We were very pleased with this one.
I then very quickly decided on the gnocchi as my meal. I have a hard time seeing other options when there’s a gnocchi one, but I was even more easily sold by the asparagus and cracked pepper. Ever since having the avocado benedict from Maplewood, I’ve been very easily persuaded by the presence of asparagus. Combine that with the labor of love that is Sotto’s gnocchi, and this was a lights out dish for me. Everything about it was delicious.
Kenny treated himself to the bavette con bottarga. Bavette, which is like a tagliatelle or pressed mostaccioli, was served with a red sauce, and the bottarga was described as “not as shocking as I would have thought.” Bottarga is a cured roe delicacy that ate like a dried meat. I didn’t take a bite because I was elbow deep in gnocchi, but neither one of us walked out with doggy bags if that tells you anything.
We also shared the black kale chicken caesar, which was a really nice addition. This one tasted like a classically well done caesar, which can be a heavy salad, but this was in fact a great light bite to have in between two rich pastas.
And then as if we hadn’t had enough, we were served a tasty little donut, something all lunch goers are treated to. While everything we had was up to Sotto’s par, this might get my most favorite vote. It was so so good. There was something super soft and rich going on in the center, and with a good swipe of caramel to coat it in, I was in heaven. The only thing that upset me was when I looked over to see Kenny had eaten his in one bite. I was hoping he would have no interest, or at least half to “share” but no dice. And with that, Sotto makes the decision to head back for lunch super simple.
Thanks for inviting and treating us Sotto!