Restaurant News

This week Rosie tells us about the recent Taste of Tuscany wine dinner she attended at Satis in Jersey City, and a Mexican Passover menu that will be offered at Rosa Mexicano in Hackensack.

We devoured our delicious dinner, drank diligently and laughed our sides off at the Taste of Tuscany wine dinner at Satis in Jersey City, which was hosted by sommelier, author, wine educator and raconteur Anthony Giglio. Satis has always been a favorite of the Safersteins: the food never disappoints. The space also has an energetic, chic ambiance with cured meats hanging above a rear counter, high ceilings, exposed bricks, hardwood floors, filament lighting, antique chandeliers, and a beautiful Carrera marble-top bar with historical pictures donning the walls. We sat upstairs and had an eagle eye view of the very knowledgeable Giglio describing the wines and regaling us with hysterical stories.

Window seat at Satis.

Bread is the barometer of a meal. When a restaurant pays attention to the first thing they feed you, most likely the rest of your meal will be notable. Ours started with bread from Balthazar and creamy homemade ricotta cheese. Need I say more?

The amuse-bouche was toasted brioche topped with rich, whipped duck, veal and pork-liver mousse paired with bubbly Contadi Castaldi Brut NV, Franciacorta DOCG, Lombardy, Italy.

Next came cacciucco, an Italian fish stew made with a seared diver sea scallop; tender, braised calamari; and crisp, rock shrimp in a spicy tomato sauce served with a grapefruity (Traminer and Sauvignon Blanc blend) Fattoria Le Pupille 2012 Elisabetta Geppetti “Poggio Argentato” Maremma Toscana, Tuscany, Italy.

Italian fish stew with a seared diver sea scallop, calamari, and crisp rock shrimp in a spicy tomato sauce.

Our favorite dish was the pappardelle al ragu di cinghiale with ethereal, homemade spring garlic noodles, wild-boar ragu, and spiced pine nuts. The sweet raisins in the sauce were a perfect counterpoint to the spicy nuts. This dish was paired with Castello di Bossi 2009 Chianti Classico DOCG, Tuscany, Italy.

Pappardelle with wild boar ragu.

We have never met a pork belly we did not love and the crispy skin porchetta, moist with just enough fat, served with grilled treviso (radicchio), salsa verde and melted leek polenta, showed the chef’s talents again in combining ingredients with complementary flavors. Two wines were served with this course. A lush Maria Caterina Dei 2010 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano DOCG, Tuscany, Italy and the Uccelliera 2008 Brunello di Montalcino DOCG, Tuscany, Italy. Both paired well, but we preferred the full-bodied Brunello di Montalcino.

Pork belly with grilled radicchio, salsa verde and melted leek polenta.

Dessert was a Sonata in Blu with pungent and slightly sweet Gorgonzola Cremificato made from the morning milk of cows in Lombardy, buttery Piccante and a dense and intense Blu del Moncenisio, which we drank with Castello Banfi Vigne Regali 2012 “Rosa Regale” Spumante, Brachetto d’Acqui DOCG, Piedmont, Italy that had a hint of raspberries.

Michael Fiorianti, who interned with Thomas Keller is the executive chef. Galice Ryan is the chef de cuisine, and has been with Satis since it opened in 2010. He has been running the kitchen operations on a daily basis for over a year now. Before coming to Satis, Galice graduated from ICE in NYC and worked at Marco & Pepe and The Breslin.

Executive chef Michael Fiorianti and Anthony Giglio

The wine bar and dining room are open Tuesday through Sunday. Brunch is served Friday through Sunday and happy hour is Tuesday through Sunday from 4 to 7 PM at the bar only. A three-course prix fixe menu can be ordered anytime Tuesday through Sunday for $30. Put this restaurant on your go-to list. The Safersteins have!

Chef de cuisine Galice Ryan
Photos courtesy of Lowell Saferstein

212 Washington St
Jersey City

Rosa Mexicano, Riverside Square, 390 Hackensack Ave, Hackensack, will offer a Passover menu (April 14-22) with a Latin twist on classic Passover dishes, from haroset to brisket. Highlights from this year’s menu include: sangria haroset; chipotle-marrow matzo ball pozole soup; matzoh-breaded chicken breast with an arugula, tomato and jicama salad, tamarind vinaigrette and salsa verde; banana leaf-wrapped BBQ beef brisket with dried fruit tsimmes and glazed baby carrots; and fresh whole mango scooped and filled with diced mangoes and coconut ice cream topped with raspberry sauce and buñuelos made with matzo meal. Reservations: 201-489-9100.

Rosa Mexicano matzo ball pozole soup.

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