Big M and I celebrate Valentine's Day, but we never make a huge deal out of it. Normally we have a nice dinner at home. I figured that since this was our first Valentine's Day as a married couple, we should do something special. This plan also gave me the opportunity to have some fun with Big M as I know that he wouldn't have remembered it was VD nor would he have made any plans.
Me: So, Valentine's Day is on Monday
Big M: I guess so...
Me: Have you made us dinner reservations yet?
Big M: Um, no. I'll get right on that.
Awesome. I normally make the plans so I was excited to see what he would come up with. We came close to crashing Luke Meat's dinner at Me & Eds, but then Big M hit it out of the park. We were going to Campagnolo.
(picture from the back of the restaurant. I like the East Van-ness of this photo)
Campagnolo has been on my wish list forever. I ride my bike past the restaurant everyday so I have been talking about going there for a long time. It was a big score on Michael's part.
They offered a 4 course set menu for Valentine's day. I love a set menu. I really don't know anything about "the progression of food" so when the Chef offers this, I like to take it. It normally guarantees that I get a dessert as well. You can't say no if it is part of the menu!
Since they offered 2 options for each of the courses, we decided to get one of each and swap halfway through so that we could each try every dish. Since I was not the designated driver for the night, and I love a fancy cocktail, I indulged in 2 of the cocktails offered for $9.00 each.
*Here is another apology for the quality of the pictures. I don't like to use flash so let's pretend they are rosy due to the sheen of love over the meal*
The Giuletta- galliano, gin, blood orange puree, pergolo porsecco.
Yummy. I loved the tang of the blood orange and I just plain love gin.
The Romeo- plymouth gin, limoncello, pergolo prosecco.
Again, very lovely. The lemon was not overpowering. Both drinks, plus the champagne we drank at home) made the evening smooth....
Burrata Mozzarella- house cured ham, castelvetramo olive, bread.
One of my favorite dishes of the night. My first experience with Burrata cheese and it was heavenly. So creamy. The waitress said they have it specially brought in for them. If they would have given me 4 plates of this I would have been very happy. I would have preferred to have pitted olives though as spitting out the seed is always awkward.
Tuna Crudo- golden beets, faro & radish salad, mint
This was my least favorite dish of the night only because I am not a fan of cooked tuna. The beet salad was nice and Big M really liked the dish.
Pasta Course. My favorite course.
Potato Gnocchi- sage butter, Parmesan
Michael almost didn't get to try this dish as it used all the strength I had not to finish the whole thing. I love gnocchi and this was light and delicious with the perfect amount of cheese.
Bucatini All 'amatriciana
guanoiale bacon, tomato sauce, basil
I loved the thickness of the noodles in this dish. I prefer pasta that isn't overly sauced and this one was perfect. And it had bacon.
Poached Steelhead Trout- fried cauliflower, lentils, parsley puree.
The fish was cooked perfectly in this dish. I really liked the combination of the fried cauliflower and lentils mix as there were some greens mixed in there as well.
Polderside Chicken mascarpone soft polenta, black kale, king oyster mushrooms
This was my other favorite dish of the night. I am now a fan of mascarpone polenta and am going to try to make this at home. So good! I have never heard of black kale before so that was fun. I liked the rolled chicken as well. The sauce that was on the chicken was amazing, especially mixed with the creamy polenta.
Dessert course (hooray!)
Chocolate & Passion Fruit for two.
I loved the amount of chocolate in this dish and am a big fan of the combination of chocolate and passion fruit. What better fruit for Valentine's day? My one problem with this dish was the hard layer of chocolate on top was hard to break through and share as it broke into big shards. Very minor issue for a great dessert.
Turns out that Mignardise means bite size dessert (2 desserts- hooray!) like a petit four that came with the bill. You won't see a picture of these as I was a but in my cups by the time the bill came and got really excited about the tiny dessert so that I ate it really quickly. Trust me though, it was cute and tasty.
All of this came to $50.00 per person, which in my opinion, was a steal. I love the vibe of this restaurant, the mix styles they have. There is beautiful wood panelling around the restaurant but the rest of the wall in cinder block. Beautiful tables on a vinyl floor with plastic chairs. The light fixtures are 4 types of bulbs tied together.
I am so close to adding Campagnolo to my favorites list from just one visit. I can't wait to go back for the Nona's table dinner or just because as we will soon be in the neighbourhood again. They now have a cafe side that is open for lunch that I will try soon as well.
Thanks for the love, Campagnolo and Big M.