A burst of summer hides inside these half-ravioli at Bar Dough.EXPAND
A burst of summer hides inside these half-ravioli at Bar Dough.
Mark Antonation

100 Favorite Dishes: Sweet Corn Mezzaluna at Bar Dough

No. 77: Corn Mezzaluna at Bar Dough
Pizza, pasta, a handful of entrees and a collection of appetizers: Not much to grab your attention on the menu at Bar Dough, right? Italian joints are scattered across Denver's culinary landscape like flecks and clumps of shaker cheese atop a bowl of spaghetti. But at Bar Dough, the details make the difference. Smoked mushrooms on a pizza or a streak of charred eggplant paste underscoring a tangle of grilled octopus arms give dishes beauty and distinction. And on a plate of mezzaluna — dainty half-ravioli — the visible artistry immediately apparent hides a burst of summer flavor as rewarding as it is unexpected.

But first the visible: Soft half-moons of pasta, trimmed with scalloped edges, come topped with cross-sections of meaty mushroom, vivid nasturtium petals and baby red sorrel leaves. A dusting of cracked pepper and a glaze of olive oil add a finishing touch. Unseen until the first cut of the knife: A creamy, sweet-corn filling that bleeds pale yellow onto the plate. Best to bite into the ravioli whole; they're a little bigger than a quarter, and the corn filling bursts onto your tongue all at once. Chef Max MacKissock forgoes the familiar Italian tricks (after all, this could easily have been doused in standard sage and brown butter or some heavy bacon concoction) to create something altogether more ephemeral — and more Colorado at heart.

Hungry for more? All the dishes in our 2016 countdown are linked below.

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