Saturday, July 3, 2010

Café Murano

We had a good meal in a pleasant setting at Café Murano the other night, and I'd certainly go back for more! We arrived to a short wait around 7 PM on a Friday night. They were quite busy and also had some large tables reserved for some wedding parties. There was a 30 minute wait for inside seating, but it was a pleasantly cool (for Florida summer) evening so we chose to eat outside. It was very pleasant out and not as loud as it got later inside (loud live music).

I will note that the servcie was a bit slow. Our waitress, Anna, was somewhat scarce, though there was another gentleman outside that appeared to be a manger of sorts and he was around a fair amount of time to make sure we were taken care of. However, we did indicate we were in no big hurry either, so I'm not sure I can fault the waitress for the slow service either. At any rate, in due time our drink orders were taken. I had a glass of house Merlot which was very good.

Eventually we placed an order for an appetizer. I chose the personal size Margherita Pizza for an appetizer. In due time it arrived and it was absolutely excellent. The crust, first of all, was very good. I believe it was made with butter, I detected a nice buttery flavor to it. It was nice and crispy, thin, and delicious. The tomatoes on top were very fresh tasting and had no canned flavor. The cheese was plentiful and the fresh basil served to give it a last bit of pizzaz. This was truly very good pizza--I think I'd go back just to try a pizza. I also noticed quite a few pizzas being delivered, so I'm guessing that they are a popular pizza place as well. Though we claimed we'd be too full and promised ourselves only a bite or two, we did clean it up before our main courses arrived. It was hard to stop eating it, it was that good!

After a fair wait, our main courses arrived. I chose the Chicken Rollatini--a chicken breast (probably pounded thin) that was stuffed with prosciutto, fontina, and mozzarella, and wrapped in pancetta. It was covered with a mushroom wine marsala sauce and served with some very creamy mashed potatoes. Overall, this was a very good dish. I'd say the chicken was just a bit on the not-quite-so-tender side, not really tough, but not really tender either. But other than that, the tastes were spot on. Yes, it was a bit hard to eat, for as soon as I cut into it the cheeses oozed out. No matter, I dealt with that. And the mushroom marsala was very good, with a nice and earthy flavor. It also had just a touch of acid and a touch of sweet in it that gave it a very interesting--and good--flavor. I liked this dish a lot. The creamy mashed potatoes worked well to help devour the mushroom marsala as well. All the tastes were very good--a very nice dish, well prepared and nicely presensted, as you can see in the photo.

My friend Tommy ordered the Chicken Della Casa, Chicken breasts that had been sauteed with mushroms, artichokes and capers in a white wine lemon butter sauce. It was served over linguini. I had a bite and it was very good, the chicken nice and tender, the acid of the artichokes a great compliment to the buttery lemon cream sauce. Tommy liked this dish--a lot.

In the course of the meal--before the entree but after the appetizer, we also had some bread. It was very good, and was served with olive oil that had a drizzle of balsamic vinegar in it and some grated parmesan cheese. This was very good, too, the bread nice and fresh and the olive oil especially fruity.

I'm glad we were able to eat outside here. Most summer evenings in Florida would be too hot and muggy for that, but on this day, it had rained and been overcast nearly all day, so was a mild evening, right around 80 degrees. Without a sun to bear down on us, it was quite pleasant. Add to that the nice setting right on Crane's Roost park with all its traffic and people-watching opportunities, and it was a nearly perfect evening.

We had a very good meal here at Cafe Murano, and I'd be happy to go back again. The food was good, the service adequate (remember, the slowness was in part attributable to our telling the waitress that we were not in a hurry), and the surrounding atmosphere very nice. I do wonder what it would be like to eat inside--we passed through on the way out and the live music was very loud. But the place was packed, a testament to food and atmosphere--as well as location. Give it a try, I'd go back!
Café Murano on Urbanspoon


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