Our department administrative assistant left a post card invitation on my desk for a new restaurant opening on the Country Club Plaza. So I took a short walk down the hill from the office to Zoe’s Kitchen, nestled next to Jack Stack.
Over the last couple of months, I’ve enjoyed taking the brief jaunt down the street to partake of a different lunch selection from Accurso’s Italian Restaurant. Today marked my fourth return visit and the weather almost tempted me to request seating outside. If it had been Saturday, when the forecast suggests fall-like mid-70s temperatures, I would have requested a patio table. Playing it safe, I choose the cool environs found inside the restaurant. I am impressed by the design and decor found on the interior of Accurso’s and the jazz standards playing in the background provide a perfect ambience.
After being seated, my waiter, Scott, who has served me three out of four times during previous lunches, related the specials available. I passed on the specials because I did not want to be saddled with a take-home package of leftovers. I imagined huge portions from what he described and I prefer something lighter for lunch. He left me to review the lunch menu while he retrieve a drink for me.
Accurso’s $5 Lunch Menu keeps drawing me back to try something different each time. Previously, I’ve tried their Southern Italian thin crust seven-inch pizza (very tasty, but not as crisp as I prefer). I also liked the Spaghetti & Meatballs, adding a side salad with a house Balsalmic vinegrette for just a buck. During my most recent visit, a couple of weeks ago, I tried the Turkey Bacon Wrap which I really enjoyed.
Scott brought my water and saw I needed more time to decide and left me for a few more minutes. I wanted to try the Spinach salad, but the Pasta Diavolo distracted me. I wondered what their home-made diavolo sauce tasted like (I know what spinach tastes like). I did a quick search on my Nook Color, using Accurso’s complimentary wifi service, to see what the common ingredients were for a diavolo sauce. I didn’t see anything that I might not like (mainly cheesey or creamy stuff since I’m somewhat lactose intelerant). What I did find suggested some spiciness, which I’m always ready to try. When Scott returned to check on me, I placed an order for the Pasta Diavolo with a side salad (gotta have my greens and that Balsalmic vinegrette is really tasty).
I made it about two-thirds of the way through my salad when Scott brought the pasta dish to my table. I didn’t rush to finish, as I wanted to savor the salad.
The diavolo sauce looked creamy, appearing less red than I had hoped. I tentatively tried a couple of pennes and couldn’t detect any overwhelming cheese flavor. I did pick up a bit of spiciness, but mildly so, warming my stomach more than my tongue as I progressed through the dish. I finished most of the pasta, but not all of it. I prefer not to drown or smother my pasta with sauce, but that’s just a personal foible of mine. I left a few penne surfing on the diavolo sauce and declined Scott’s offer to box up the remainder for me to take home. I don’t think I’ll be re-ordering this lunch selection in the future. Not because it wasn’t well prepared and presented, but rather because I didn’t find it as appealing to my pallette as I wished it to be.
Next time, a week or so down the road, I plan to try the Spinach Salad.
Ciao, for now.