We went with more urbane selections when it came time for dessert. Baci's version of tiramisu ($4.95) was an understated little number unusually--and pleasantly--lacking in sweetness. It had the standard components--ladyfingers, mascarpone cheese and espresso--but the addition of Kahlua and a heavy dusting of bittersweet chocolate kept the dessert from being overbearing. (Schmidt has since changed the recipe to include Sambuca instead of Kahlua.) We also couldn't pass up the beguiling mascarpone cheesecake made with marshmallows ($5), a stump of seemingly whipped ingredients that also benefited from being not too sweet; Schmidt says he came up with the treat purely by accident.
Too bad that sense of adventure wasn't apparent anywhere else in the Baci experience. Eating at Baci is like scratching the surface of the Mona Lisa and finding it was done on a paint-by-numbers canvas. Thomas Jefferson would probably tell Schmidt and Ciancia it's time to declare independence from all this formality and lighten up a bit in the dining room.