Davanti Enoteca (1359 W. Taylor St.) is a little different than other Italian concepts.  They’re more of an Italian gastropub that features excellent hearth made pizzas.  We went in the two of us on a late weekday night and sat at a high-top table near the front.  The space is cozy, dimly lit, with a long communal table near the center of the restaurant.  Very nice layover.  The atmosphere was energetic but still relaxing.  After the table visually screamed its name, “12!” at us (see picture above), we settled in and glanced over the menu.

We began the meal with a pizza.  We saw a number walk by our table and they looked and smelled outstanding.  We went with an earthy blend of Taleggio cheese, wild mushrooms, nicely braised leeks and a drizzle of truffle oil.  Okay, first off, I know that truffle oil is synthetic and has NOTHING to do with real truffles – I know this.  As long as you recognize that, I suppose it’s okay to enjoy the stuff.

With that out of the way, to the pizza.  It arrived quickly and we were able to watch it’s preparation.  The pizza chef prepared it carefully.  The toppings were spread out evenly, thus being cooked evenly as well.  The Taleggio was funky but melted perfectly.  We are big fans of the variety of cheese on burgers as well. – try it sometime at home.

We’re at an Italian restaurant that serves freshly made pasta, so why not have a pasta course tonight.  Once we saw the linguine with sea urchin and crab we knew that would be resting before us, shortly.  The pasta was tender and had some nice chew – it was cooked properly and the sauce clung well.  Layered and full of fresh oceanic flavors – uni, to me, tastes just how an aquarium smells – super fishy in the freshest way – a bit like the ocean.

We were feeling it, so we ordered their house burger.  It’s a delicious freshly ground blend that’s cooked to your liking and served atop a bakery fresh bun.  But the kicker?  Curds.  Cheese curds.  On your burger.  They brown up some Wisconsin curds in a skillet and place them atop your burger along with their ridiculous bacon jam.  No need for strips of pork, the jam gives the smoke and bold essence you’re looking for without the clutter. – not that bacon is ever REALLY clutter – just saying.

I’m hungry.  Let’s eat!


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