My previous awesome experience at Anteprima was completely tainted last night. We had to wait 30 minutes to be seated despite having a reservation. Our server was just plain rude and completely distracted from ensuring we had a pleasant dining experience. And, I found the tagliatelle to be a bit too salty and dry for my liking. My eating partners were very disappointed by the short ribs. The only thing that redeemed the trip was that they are still offering their $30 Restaurant Week menu to patrons.
Location – 5316 N. Clark (Clark and Summervale)
In one word – Compensating
Food – I felt like I had a true gastronomic experience at Anteprima! We started with a plate of appetizers brought out by the owner (more on why later): Roasted peppers with breadcrumbs (fab!), marinated olives, caponata, cannellini beans, faro, and sweet and sour onions. Then we sampled the most gourmet bread on a stick I’ve ever had–prosciutto and a salted breadstick. That was all to start! Some of my eating partners chose an additional starter to share. They said that the polenta, mussels and radicchio were all stunning. The cheese with the radicchio was especially notable. For my main, I chose a half order of ricotta and chard ravioli. I have to say that the brown butter and sage combination on top of the pasta made me euphoric. And the half portion was just right. One of my eating partners tried the braised beef. It was so tender that it flaked off like pulled pork! How my eating partners had space for dessert is beyond me. They had the apple fennel bread pudding and could only say good things.
Drink – We were reunioning, so it was a sort of celebration for my group. We chose a couple great bottles in the moderate price range and everyone was happy.
Service – So here’s the story. Our reservations were at 8:30. By 9:15, we were still waiting at the bar to be seated. One of my eating partners put up a huff. Here’s what I appreciated–the owner of the restaurant responded accordingly. He gave us complimentary appetizers, which showed me that he appreciated our patronage. I understand that unexpected problems come up when running a restaurant. All I ask is that restaurants are apologetic when mistakes happen and Anteprima did exactly that. Kudos to them!
Scene – The scene was super sociable here. All the couples/groups came to talk over great food and wine. Being in Andersonville, the vibe was casual.
Dress – We were all wearing jeans and sweaters and fit in perfectly.
Cost – For all of that food and wine (appetizers were comped), we each paid $58 including tax and tip. I thought it was such a deal!
If you like, try…Spacca Napoli