Monday, October 7, 2013

A Cure For our Wednesday Evening.

Guys, I have been TERRIBLE. And I'm so sorry. The month of September was a bit of a mad house. I was gone 15 of the 30 days for either work of personal travel. And when I was home, I was working like a maniac. BUT I have tons of great recipes that I've been working on and food that I've been eating.

The Husband had his first of two vacations this past week and we made it a point to go play in our new city. And boy, did we play.

On Wednesday evening we went to Cure, a restaurant in our new neighborhood that has been getting rave reviews since it opened in 2011.  The Chef/Owner Justin Severino was in a New York Times piece about reviving the Rust Belt, Bon Appetit nominated him for one of the 50 Best New Restaurant in 2012 and he won the Pittsburgh Magazine's 2013 Star Chef award.  And from eating at his restaurant, he deserves it.

The restaurant is small, it only seats about 44 or so people at a time on the floor, with an additional four seats up by the kitchen. The menu changes regularly, depending on what meats and vegetables they are able to locally source and the charcuterie is no joke. Everything but the bread is made in house and everything was awesome.

Over the summer it went from a BYO to a full service bar. The cocktails were really well mixed, I stayed on the more refreshing side of things, having two different gin based drinks with lemon. The Husband stuck with brown drinks and was happy. I must say, the Bartender was lovely! He was enthusiastic about explaining what we ordered and gave some great direction. We were really impressed.

We started the evening with their small charcuterie platter that came with pate campagnola, a rustic and coursely chopped pate, a lardo that was buttery and to die for, a lovely finocchiona (fennel salumi) and, a pepper salumi that was salty and had a little kick.  The plate also had some fresh made giardineria, some house pickles and house made mustard that was so fantastic that we kept eating it when there was nothing left to put it on. 

From there we moved onto the Porchetta Tonnato with Pickled Green Apples, Fennel Pollen and 30 year Balsamic. Porchetta is a fatty boneless pork roast that is salted and covered in garlic, rosemary, fennel and other wild herbs. I know, it sounds delightful and mixed with the tart Pickled Apples and the sweet balsamic, it was perfect.

We also had a spinach gnocchi with ragu of pistachio, scallions and a huge piece of smoked mozzarella in the center of the plate. The gnocchi was light and fluffy and the sauce it was covered in was amazing and the smoked mozzarella was perfect. It was a light smoke, so you got some of the flavors, but it didn't overpower the dish at all, it really enhanced the sauce,  The Husband and I were licking the plate clean as we were eating it.

From there we had our entrees, The Husband had the Charcrout.  Charcrout  originates from the Alsace region of France, and it's a comfort food made from sauerkraut, sausage and potatoes.  At Cure, the Charcrout was a HUGE bowl filled with pork belly confit, apple braised pork cheek, smoked  sausage, sauerkraut, sapetzle, maple- coffee mustard, gruyere, rye. The rye was actually toasted and made into rye breadcrumbs, which was placed on the side of the bowl and acted like bread for the meat. The pork belly was done perfectly, it was tender and very flavorful, the house made sausage was flavorfull. All and all, the dish was really well put together and tasted wonderful.

However, I won for best dish of the night. Hands down, and The Husband will agree. I ordered the Meyer Ranch Hanger Steak, which was a deconstructed Steak Au Poivre.  The dish came out, and it had different sauces throughout, our waitress told us that the idea was to mix and match the sauces, but that when eaten together, it tasted like an Au Poivre. The dish came out with caramelized cipollini onions, fresh goat cheese, a basil sauce, a Bearnaise, and another pureed sauce (that sadly I can't recall) but was really perfect. The   hanger steak, which was covered in peppercorn, was fantastic  it had the texture of a Strip Steak. It was amazing. The Husband kept taking bites of mine.

As we were extremely full from our dinner, we skipped dessert.

Overall, we had a fantastic time. My one complaint, the noise level.  As I said before, the restaurant is on the smaller side and they play the music pretty loud in there. Between that and the number of people in the restaurant, The Husband and I had a hard time hearing one another. Which says something, since we both are pretty loud. 

But if the one thing I can complain about is that the restaurant was too loud, then so be it.  We're planning on going back soon, they do month Hog Butchering Dinners, so I not only learn how to break down a pig, but I get to drink while learning and then eat it after? Count us in!


  1. Actually, when I had it it didn't have the porter squab, they were serving apple braised pork cheek. Which is fine with me as I prefer pork cheek to most things.