Trattoria Piatto – Carlisle, PA

Last evening, he made it to my place with time to spare after work and we could take our time in deciding where to eat. We drove into Carlisle, parked and walked around in search of a restaurant that had a dish that would catch our eye. We walked around for a while, stopping to read several menus and exploring the farmers market, seeing several interesting booths there, however, I digress from the stated topic, back to the Piatto!

Drove over to Pomfret Street and were pleased to get patio seating at the Piatto. We’d dined there once before, but that was several years ago and we were excited to see what changes and improvements they’d grown into in that time. However, the menu appeared the same.

I sat back and let him order, we got three antipastis, their special of the evening, a bruschetta, which was alright, very traditional, but pale in comparison to that which we’d had at the Market Cross Pub.

We also had their “‘Asparagi alla Griglia’ – Fresh asparagus spears, grilled, topped with a fried local egg and parmesan cheese”, it was tasty, and had plenty of cheese. A perfectly sized plate, it made me hungry and ready for dinner to arrive without filling me up all that much.

One of the things we like to order when we’re somewhere that has it on the menu is the Pizza Margherita, it’s sort of our measuring stick, comparing apples to apples, and simple enough to speak to the skill of the restaurant. They had one, and so we ordered it, and were throughly disappointed. the toppings were fine enough, but the crust was floury and overwhelmed everything else. It almost seemed to have been bought at a store, except that I’ve gotten better ones at the local grocery.

It felt like quite awhile till anymore food arrived, then the primi and secondi came out together.

Our primi was “‘Trofie al Pesto’ – Short, rolled pasta tossed with green beans, boiled potatoes & and the classic sauce of fresh basil, garlic, pine nuts, parmesan & olive oil”. The basil wasn’t the most flavorful I’ve ever had, but the olive oil came through nicely and the pasta was a lovely al dente.

For secondi, we had “‘Cannelloni’ – Pasta crepes stuffed with VEAL / spaghetti / marinara”. The marinara was tasty and they quickly brought us more when we asked. Veal was very creamy and full of flavor.

After finally getting our waitress’s attention (we think maybe she was beginning to take care of her end of the evening tasks), we asked for and received a desert menu, only to start reading them and find that we had to ask for the day’s sorbet and gelato flavors, which meant we had to wait on our waitress again.

Eventually, he ordered a single scoop of the chocolate amaretto gelato, I got a scoop of the watermelon sorbet. The flavor of mine seemed different at first, but then, being made from the actual fruit instead of the candy flavoring, different was to be expected. The small bite I had of his gelato revealed a lovely, smooth flavor that was neither too light nor overpowering, but the texture wasn’t quite right, it left a sort of powdery coating on one’s tongue.

Overall, it was a nice evening, though on the long side, and they seem to have stayed at about the same place they were three years ago.

In the restaurant week comparison, our favorite (and the only one we really plan to revisit) is Café Bruges. Congrats!

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