TRAVEL HERE: MY NEW GO-TO ITALIAN PLACE
On a Sunday afternoon, after a museum visit, Bill and I spent about forty-five minutes driving around downtown Dallas. We thought maybe in one of those places we used to hang out we’d find something new and exciting, but mostly we found construction sites for more multi-use developments. It was far too hot to enjoy anything al fresco, but we were out of options for new and exciting, so we made our way to Trinity Groves.
Giving It Another Try
Bill and I have tried to have fun at Trinity Groves several times and have always been under-impressed, even though we see huge potential for the area it’s just not hopping 24/7 like we think it should be. Perhaps on Friday or Saturday evening it fulfills it potential, but that’s when we’re usually in Heath enjoying a glass of wine on our patio. There’s something about a great view out your back door that discourages fighting for parking spaces and tables on weekend evenings. Still, we like being plugged into our city, so we venture out on Sundays and various weekdays.
On this particular Sunday afternoon it appeared we’d bombed out again. Granted 5:30 is a little early for dinner and very late for lunch, but the whole Trinity Groves complex was empty of anything except a few employees standing inside restaurants polishing glasses and wrapping silverware. Drinking and dining just weren’t happening.
However, we were hungry and tired of being hungry. Since a place called Saint Rocco’s had just opened for the day we strolled inside. The hostess was very glad to see us and placed us in a seat where we could see the whole restaurant. It was something to see.
The decor is black and white with touches of red. Black and white tile floor, black table and chairs with white tablecloths. A large bar separates the restaurant from the food prep area. Shelves of large cans of tomatoes and other staples add a hint of color. We liked it!
And Then There Was Food
The menu has all the usual Italian food choices, but don’t get discouraged. As soon as they delivered the warm delicious bread to our table, we knew we’d wandered into the right place. Even the olive oil they gave us to dip the bread in was special. Then we washed the bread down with a little Moretti’s and life was good.
While we waited for our meal the manager came around to chat us up. She was a darling thing with a charming accent and we immediately liked her. Bill asked her what the difference was in Italian and New York Italian. It was something I’d never thought about before. Had you?
Our gracious host explained that when Italians came to the States, they couldn’t get the ingredients they used to make their family dishes at home, so they had to find replacements. Italian family recipes made with American ingredients are collectively New York Italian and they are beloved far beyond the Big Apple.
Bill and I both chose classics. He had the Eggplant Parmesan and I had the Alfredo. He was glad he had plenty for two meals, but I wolfed mine down in one fell swoop. I loved it and here’s what I loved, the sauce, which was delicious, was used with restraint. Most Alfredo dishes are drowned in too much sauce. In this dish I could taste everything and had a delightful sauce to compliment it all. The pasta was perfect, the vegetables were perfect and the sauce was perfect – and they were all presented in perfect proportions.
Confession, the dessert experience was disappointing. Apparently, there is a shortage of dessert menus, because when we asked for one the waitress slipped it out of an apron pocket. We landed on a choice, but it was one they no longer offered. Before we had time to reconsider the other choices, the waitress had slipped the menu back into her pocket. We took it as a sign we were not meant to have dessert and asked for the check at the first opportunity.
We’ll Be Back
Dessert mishap aside, we’ll be returning. The atmosphere is nice, the prices are reasonable and the food is out of this world. The service was good enough and we loved the manager. Maybe next time we visit we may finally have an al fresco experience in Trinity Groves to rave about.