There is a famous saying that food brings people together, and over food you have some of the best conversations. This was definitely the case when we visited Sorrento North in Maple Ontario. We were blissfully fed by the owner, Nico Cioffi, who is a third generation gelato maker and Restaurateur. Nico shared with us some of the best dishes we have ever tasted all inspired by the taste of the Amalfi coast where he grew up. In the few hours that we spent with him, he managed to take us on a nice journey through Italy all while sharing the love and memory he has of his town through his food.
All of the dishes we had were made from scratch right in their kitchen, from the homemade pastas to the fragrant tomato sauce they were simmered in. These were not just any old tomatoes either, they were tomatoes that were imported from Italy. I asked him, “this must get really expensive to import your ingredients” and he answered “but these are the ingredients that make the meal”. Well said Nico – you could clearly taste the difference fresh ingredients make. We must have spent at least 3 hours there and he attended to all our questions and queries, and somehow they all led to a story.
As soon as you walk in you are greeted by this display of pasta imported straight from Italy. If I could eat this everyday I would be a very happy person.
Insalta Positano -Baby spinach, orange, pine nuts, goat cheese, tossed in a homemade lemon dressing. Perfect appetizer to set the stage for our feast.
Scialatielli del Pescatore – In house made pasta with clams, mussels, calamari and shrimps in a vesuvio cherry tomato sauce. The pasta was perfectly al dente and the tomato sauce was light and fragrant, we sopped it up with crusty bread
Spaghetti Nerano – Spaghetti mixed with zucchini in reggiano and basil sauce. We love a good vegetarian pasta with fresh herbs, minimalist yet bursting with flavour and delicious.
Fried calamari, julienne vegetables with fresh lemon and tartar sauce. Lightly battered and seasoned with a pinch of salt – that’s it. The flavour was locked in the simplicity of this popular starter dish.
Alici Marinate: Fresh marinated anchovies with garlic, chilli flakes and parsley. This dish made a fan out of us, never tried anchovies this tasty before.
Seafood steam cooked in fragrant tomato sauce. The art of cooking in the “wood paper” keeps the flavour locked inside while keeping it healthy and light.
Lemon Delight – Soft lemon cake topped with whip cream and zested with lemon. Perfect end to a perfect meal.
What an amazing dessert to end off our amazing culinary experience through the Amalfi coast. We got to meet the chef and see first hand how he created this masterpiece. This speciality dessert is expertly handcrafted and chef Lorenzo only makes five of these a night, once they are gone that is it for the night. Thank you chef Nico for this amazing experience!
I know when we make it to Italy our bags on route back with be packed full with fresh pasta and tomatoes 🙂
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RG and RJ Out!