Thursday, December 30, 2010

Corso 32

With a couple coworkers and friends raving about the recently opened Corso 32 last week, I couldn't wait to give it a try. Only open for about two weeks, Charles and I were expecting a few of the bumps that seem to come with new restaurants. But from start to finish we found the food to be fantastic and service friendly, casual and professional, so here's a bit of a recount.

On our way to a movie Monday evening, we arrived around 5pm with no reservation and a few back up choices in case things didn't pan out. As we waited for a moment so the reservation book could be checked, we took in the space - crisp and clean, it was like stepping outside Edmonton for a moment, with light sparkling off the glasses and white walls. Upon arrival we were also greeted by a busy though quiet open kitchen, an addition to the space we both loved. Happily most of the reservations that evening were made for 7pm, which gave us ample time to sit down at a table for two.

Though the menu is small, with maybe a dozen items and one dessert, it changes almost daily (save a few regular items like the arancini) depending on the ingredients available, with one or two specials always making an appearance. The thought that we could have gone back the very next day to new items and possibly a different menu was exciting and refreshing, and as we decided on that evening's dishes we already knew we would be back soon.

Hearing most about the arancini ($9) from others, the dish was certainly on the list to share. Charles quickly decided on the braised meatballs ($22), while I zoomed in on the milk braised rabbit sausage ragù pasta ($18). We also ordered a side of 'wild' arugula ($7) to share.

The arancini were up first. Smoked with soft, warm cheese at the centre, flecks of ham throughout the creamy risotto and a crispy exterior, we probably could have continued eating the arancini alone all evening, and we found this dish easily lived up to the raves from others.

There were actually five of these, but by the time we broke out the camera, two had been consumed.

Our mains were just as memorable. The braised meatballs were moist, perfectly seasoned and topped with a rich tomato sauce and peppery arugula, and I waisted no time stealing a couple bites from Charles. The rabbit sausage ragù was also enjoyable, with comforting, rich, flavourful sausage and silky smooth sheets of fresh pasta, Charles couldn't resist stealing a few bites from my plate too.

Braised meatballs

Milk braised rabbit sausage ragù pasta

We gave an immediate 'yes' to dessert - chocolate torta with salted, roasted hazelnuts ($9). This was one special chocolate dessert. Silky smooth, ultra rich chocolate ganache topped with still warm salted hazelnuts; it was like eating a bar of Amedei's Gianduja, but somehow so much better. Definitely a great way to end an excellent meal.

There was no time for picture taking at the beginning of this one

With the combination of a beautiful space of wood, glass, concrete and crisp white walls, friendly, knowledgeable staff and fantastic food, we can't wait to head back to Corso 32. After a couple recent outings that were good but not great, this place provided us with one of the most fantastic evenings out in awhile after being open for only two weeks. Definitely can't wait to see where they go from here.

Corso 32
10345 Jasper Avenue
Corso 32 on Urbanspoon

Also check out Mimi's thoughts (plus more pictures) over at Cute Pig. Plus some professional pictures of the space and food on Urban Spoon.

*Just as a mention, we went to see The King's Speech, which was really enjoyable. And best of all, no popcorn required.


A Canadian Foodie said...

Now that is a great review - and I will definitely be there if it is one of your greatest evenings out in a while... and you are out all of the time!
Happy New Year to you!!!!

Anonymous said...

Gonna hit it up tomorrow. Thanks for the preview! Happy New Year Marianne.

Marianne said...

Happy New Year to you too, Valerie! Lol! Let me know what you think when you go.

Have fun, Chris. Looking forward to your thoughts, some new dishes and pictures. And to you.

darlin said...

Thanks for the review, now I know what to expect! Cheers. :-)