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Saturday, July 20, 2013

Bocca Lupo- Inman Park, Atlanta

Warning:  The following may be inappropriate for children under the age of 13 and those who don't like corn

Inman Park has long been the home to some great restaurants.  Bocca Lupo sits close to the Rathbun dynasty by Krog, but enough off the beaten path in a sleepy neighborhood which fits the reclusive nature of it's purveyor Bruce Logue.  We did not meet him, but from afar, he reminded me of Freddy Roach, the iconic boxing trainer.  Just like Freddy, Bruce seems to be a pretty enigmatic character.  Leslie thought otherwise......
These hands are not only fast, they can crank out some pasta
They do differentiate themselves from Inman Parks more infamous Sotto Sotto.  Bocca Lupo is a bit more traditional and a bit more easy on the wallet.  But I will always love Sotto Sotto, it is where we went right after I proposed to my wife.

Great looking bar.  Not crazy about the stools though
I will say the restaurant was hot both inside and (of course outside), and I do realize it was mid-July in Atlanta.  But anytime we get The Dry Rub 4 gets together, it's a great thing.
It was so hot, I got a personalized sweat towel.  Leslie even pretended to be extra happy to be in my company
The service was outstanding and they created a great tasting menu for us.  Jeff Miller did a great job setting this up for us.  And we had our usual array of delicious Falcor Wines.

So here are the highlights:

We started it out with a few good appetizers (Antipasti)

Iowa prosciutto, piadina, ricotta with pineapple mostarda
This prosciutto was the best thing to come out of Iowa since "Field of Dreams."  The Pineapple Mostarda was original and delicious.  It stood on it's own.  By the way, it's not hard to be the 2nd best thing out of Iowa.  I just looked up the state on google and it sounds just god awful.  Like I would move to Detroit from Iowa bad.  I think I just ruined any chance of franchising "The Dry Rub" in the Hawkeye State.

The Octopus & mortadella spiedino, shell beans, spinach and marsala

The eight legged creature was cooked to perfection. It wasn't tough, nor overcooked as you can see above. The beans underneath I thought were a bit tart.

Hand rolled garganelli, white ragu, celery root and field peas
This was a small, but very tasty dish.  The thin white sauce worked well with the garganelli.

Carolina crab & middlin risotto, dill and cool tomato broth
This is the best risotto I've had outside of Kevin Gillespie's "Gunshow" in the last year.  Of course adding crab to a dish never hurts your cause.

Wide pappardelle, bolognese gravy with American Parm
Probably the most traditional dish we had.  It was exactly what you thought it would be.  Hearty with a classic bolognese taste.

Black spaghetti, calabrese sausage, red shrimp and scallions
This was probably my favorite dish of the night.  Love the squid inked pasta, it just has a great taste to it and you really do not get it at too many places.  The sausage and shrimp combination is never a bad pairing.

Big scallops (no shit) , field pea salad, bronze fennel with a dragoncello emulsion
This was delicious. Of course I'm a sucker for a well seared large scallop. But at this point the pea, corn ingredients were getting a little too common.  But we also got the tasting menu, so you may get what's in season.  Or at least that's what Jeff screamed at Leslie and I that night.

Todays Footnote:
The Dry Rub now has a Facebook page!  Okay, we should have done this at least 6 months and 10,000 hits ago.  But it has happened.  "Like it" and you should be able to keep up with the whimsical musings a little easier than before.

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