I celebrated my birthday back in June by having Italian at the cute Enoteca Vespaio on South Congress in Austin. I had previously only gotten their desserts to-go. It wasn't until I was sure of my imminent move to DC that Enoteca came up on my list of "Austin restaurants I'll regret not having eaten at." I can't afford Vespaio next door, but at least Enoteca gave me a taste of how delicious pasta and seafood can get in Austin.
Cozze - PEI Mussels Steamed with White Wine and Patate Fritte
My parents and I shared the Cozze as a starter. The mussels were plump and juicy. The white wine and garlic broth was so good that mom and I ate it up like soup. The garlic fries are the best fries in Austin. Yes, even better than the ones from Izzoz Tacos, which I was obsessed over, because Entoeca's is crunchier on the outside yet fluffy on the inside.
Mom and Dad ordered the pan-seared halibut and wagyu beef pasta, both specials of the day. The quality of ingredients is especially noteworthy.
Chisholm Ranch Wagyu Beef Sugo with Fusilli, Cipolline, Onions, and Reggiano
Pan-Seared Halibut with Sweet Corn, Tealla, Yukon Potatoes, and Shrimp-Caper Aioli
I ordered the rich and luscious linguine misto mare. The tomato-based broth is so full of the sweetness of seafood and the pungency of garlic and herbs. Heavenly. What's very different about this pasta dish is that the sauce is as thin as soup rather than thick like regular pasta sauce. This was great because I ate the sauce like soup after consuming all the seafood and linguine.
Linguine Misto Mare - Shrimp, Calamari, Mussels, and Linguine in a Spicy Arrabbiata Sauce
I ended the meal with a cafe latte not knowing that this was the best cafe latte I would ever taste in Austin! It was a great surprise.