Posted by: lisetta | March 15, 2009

Fidanzamento

Engagement parties are always a lot of fun: families and friends getting together to know one another, the couple beaming with love and happiness. Wish I could float around town at these events more often, especially when they’re full of Italian speakers. 🙂

utThis afternoon Nick’s family invited me to come to John and Melissa’s engagement party, at Union Trust, one the of the city’s newest steakhouses.

Fughettabout the “Italian food without pretension” in the blog title. With a menu representing the country’s best in beef and seafood, there’s little room for humility. And rightfully so. I wonder: is the $12 million investment about a business plan with a positive cash flow? It so feels instead like the establishment of an institution.  Loved admiring the impeccable design elements on my visit; can’t imagine an occasion where I’d ever find myself there for dinner! 

At a party hosted by four generations of Italians, only the first course appetizers played on the theme. Abundant self-serve olives, cheese and salame slices disappeared slowly, while the wandering waitstaff offered prosciutto-wrapped grissini (mistakenly called “crostini”).

The crab cake sliders and the raw oysters were my faves, but the real hits seemed to be the wagyu BBQ and the filet sliders served with caramelized onions and blue cheese. Steaklover Nick renamed these as “sex sliders”, much to the amusement of everyone at our table. Thankfully mustered the tact not to share the slaughterhouse visions dancing through my mind! LOL.

The pastry chef put out the most impressive creations: lemon tartlets, nut-crusted truffles, cheesecake lollipops, and a dense fruit-filled chocolate cake way better than any of the desserts I tasted at Le Bec Fin last summer. Complimenti! Who is she? And why doesn’t the restaurant include her name on its website? 

Anyway, so many folks effused kindness, generosity of spirit and sense of “vivere bene” (living well) tonight. You can’t help but walk away with a light heart. Grazie a tutti!

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Responses

  1. Sounds wonderful. You must try dinner there.

  2. Wow what a feast. Is this place open to general lunches or dinners? Or is it just for catered affairs?

  3. They’re definitely open for dinner, and probably lunch, too, at least through the week. If you get to it, let me know what you think. The food and service were great for the party, but it was thrown by a VIP, so I’m not sure what the experience is like for commoners.

  4. Since I’m not likely to enter the shrine, it’s nice to see a photo of it. It’s gorgeous. It was a bank, I assume?

  5. Yes, it was. see the original press release with some details of the history of the building at:
    http://www.phoodie.info/2008/06/25/more-details-of-union-trust-emerge-cholesterol-levels-rising-already/
    If this were an Italian place, I’d quit my job and beg them to let me work there….and work to convince them that more vegetarian options are a good thing. 🙂


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