San Valentino Menu from Da Mirco
Valentine’s Day 2021 brought miserable weather and a most delicious meal to our neck of the woods. And that San Valentino dinner from Mirco Fondrini’s osteria in Bridge Street banished the wind and the rain for a few hours at least and his four magnificent and generous courses turned into an evening to remember.
The courses followed classical lines: antipasto, primo plato, secondo plato and dolce. There was also a wine option but I had spotted that the meat course, based on beef cheek from O’Mahony Butchers in the English Market, had been slow-cooked in Barbera D’Asti. I had a bottle of Barbera D’Alba (next door to Asti) that had been waiting for just such a worthy excuse.
Bouillabaisse is the famous classic fish soup from Southern France and the tourist version is often lacking, well, fish. The Italians have their own fish soup and we started with Mirco’s Zuppetta Al Frutti Di Mare. At first glance it looked as if it contained just liquid but, once tipped out of the container, we could see calamari, mussels and prawns in the tomato and bisque soup. A hearty and delicious start, and any remains were soaked up with his focaccia.
Have been a fan of Cannelloni since I enjoyed it on the back streets of Rome. Our Cannelloni Di Melanzane though was an enhanced edition, thanks to Micro and his team. Here the pasta tubes was stuffed with aubergine and Pecorino cheese and finished with the house tomato and basil sauce. Superbo!
There was a little bit of home cooking involved of course and the O'Mahony beef cheeks came in a bag and took about 15 minutes. But what a result! Our stunning Secondo Plato was called Guancia Di Manzo Topinaburn Al Tarfuto (Braised beef cheek slow cooked in Barbera D’Asti and served with creamy mash & truffle infused Jerusalem artichokes). So tender, so flavoursome, aromatic even. We barely needed the wine!
And so we continued on the Dolce Vita, the final stop, Zuppa Inglese Al Cioccolato Arance, the sweetest. The name in English was somewhat more prosaic: Sponge cake with dark chocolate orange mouse and Hazelnut Praline. Looked a bit dry but once it all came together in the mouth, it struck all the right notes, those hazelnuts outstanding.
Quite a meal for the occasion. Grazie mille, Mirco!
It may not be Valentine’s every weekend but Mirco always has quite a selection for you to click and collect.