Monday, December 30, 2013

Bistro Europa - 12.20.13

Shortly before Christmas, my wife and I had a chance to go back to one of my favorite restaurants in Buffalo - Bistro Europa. Not only was it a rare date night for just the two of us, but we were able to get two seats at the bar last minute and had a great meal.

You'll remember that our last visit was quite memorable, with several great dishes. This visit was even better.

We weren't hungry enough for starters and an entree this time around, so we started by sharing Ellen's Bread Basket. On this visit, Ellen had made Sourdough, a pretzel roll and a walnut/wheat bread. Here it is:

As always, it was accompanied with the extra virgin olive oil and that delicious Burro di Chianti. The Burro was as good as I remembered. Check out the piece from our previous visit for the details on this little gem. Here's what they looked like:

We chose some delicious entrees that evening. Here's a look at my wife's selection:

Seared Prime Hanger Steak with fries, a salad of arugula, lemon and parmigiano reggiano and a rutabaga puree. 

This one was spot on! The steak was cooked perfectly. It was flavorful and tender. The fries were also cooked right - salty and crispy. The salad was the perfect foil for the richness of the meat and the sweetness of the rutabaga. Such a classic pairing and executed perfectly.

Here's a look at my entree:

House-made Contechino sausage and Beluga Lentils.

As you know, I love all things porcine and all things Italian. This sausage is the perfect synergy of both things. Cotechino is made in many regions across Italy. It's traditionally a New Year's Eve dish served with lentils, both of which are supposed to bring good luck. Steve's version was killer. It was incredibly tender and well seasoned. The earthy lentils balanced the richness of the Contechino wonderfully. I could have had another bowl of this. Steve has already told me that this will be on their New Year's Eve menu. You should definitely stop by and check it out!

Another reason we didn't start with appetizers is that we didn't want to be too full to enjoy one of Ellen's delicious desserts. There were three great choices. While we toyed with the idea of getting two, as the house-made chocolate donuts sounded and looked amazing, but we ended up splitting our favorite dish from our last visit:

Ellen's Sticky Toffee Pudding!

It just doesn't get better than that. The ultimate comfort food. It was piping hot and the fruit and spices in the cake were paired perfectly with the freshly whipped cream and sticky toffee sauce. The toffee sauce is just amazing. Well done, Ellen! I may try some other dessert next time I stop by....but I doubt it. This is just too good!

If you haven't check this place it! What are you waiting for?! Let me know what you think.


© The Nittany Epicurean, 2013.  All Rights Reserved.

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