4.50 Stars – Overall Experience
3.75 Stars – Price
4.25 Stars – Service
4.50 Stars – Food
4.25 Stars – Atmosphere
Banfi Cabernet Sauvignon Sangiovese
Gnocchi Con Pomodoro
Vaniglia e Cioccolato
Lively atmosphere, incredibly well crafted dishes and friendly service, has this Kook swooning over her main dish at Italian By Night Restaurant in Saint John New Brunswick, Canada.
It seems that whenever a restaurant offers exposed Edison bulbs for lighting, I am in for a great meal. Large open space with industrial modern decor, Italian By Night is trendy and familiar all wrapped in one. The tables are well spaced and with multiple sizes, there is a spot for any party size from 1 to many more.
Despite having no reservations (last minute decision to check out this restaurant from a recommendation), the hostess juggled some things around to make sure that I could get a table (really nice of her to do so). I was seated and my amazing waitress helped me pick a glass of wine with a clear sense of the list and bold honesty which I appreciated. Shortly after, she brought me a hot towel to freshen up – a delightful luxury and something I had not experienced at a restaurant in a long time. She was friendly, quick, helpful and made me feel relaxed the whole evening. It definitely added to my experience.
With a little help from my waitress, I landed on the Gnocchi Con Pomodoro (I can’t lie, it is hard for me to say no to a handmade gnocchi). It was served in a beautiful bowl and topped with fresh pea shoots that really brightened up the dish. So lets break this down. I have had a lot of gnocchi in my life and this dish was definitely in my list of top favourites. The gnocchi was a generous size and managed to maintain a light and fluffy texture (not mushy). The sauce was a tomato basil cream sauce and the fat from it left a beautiful flavour on my tongue. Extremely well seasoned as well. Finally to top it all off was a bowl made of Parmesean, filled with a light ricotta cheese that, when mixed into the dish, made the whole thing come together. Delizioso!
For Dessert I ended up choosing the Vaniglia e Cioccolato, which was described as vanilla gelato with hot fudge sauce, crumbled nut brittle, whipped cream and candied orange zest on the menu. For some reason, there was no nut brittle but instead toasted marshmallow. While this might have been a pleasant surprise for some, it unfortunately wasn’t for me (I don’t eat gelatin) so I moved them aside and dove into the rest. The candied orange zest was probably the best part of the dish. The fudge was delicious, but there wasn’t enough of it and the gelato was ok (I have had better gelato). A little bit of a let down after such an incredible main, but still pretty good and beautifully presented.
There were definitely plenty of vegetarian options from apps to pizzas to mains which was nice to see. Very vegetarian friendly I would say.
Not a cheap meal but for the quality of food I would say the price was extremely reasonable. For a generous size glass of wine, my main (which was very filling) and dessert was around $42 not including tax and tip.
Time of Dinner: 6:30pm
Date: Wed Aug 23rd, 2017
For more information be sure to visit http://italianbynight.com/