Just when you think everything that needs to be said has been, something goes and changes. In the case ofmy review of Olivea
, it's the menu. John Broening and his crew made the switch to a fall/winter menu just days after I finished my final review meal in their dining room. And while it is not an earth-shaking change (Olivea is not, for example, suddenly becoming a sushi restaurant or anything), it is significant in a couple of cases.
For starters, there are the starters -- the addition of a country pate with peppered pork tenderloin that I want to try, like, now. There's also a Tuscan soup on the board; a plate of fritto misto with lemon aioli (another reason to return); a new flatbread with bacon, crème fraiche and onions; and a potato torta that needs investigating.
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The entrée list has been more altered than turned with the seasons. The lamb gnocchi that I wasn't crazy about? It's been replaced with a mushroom gnocchi. But the duck meatballs have been left (thankfully) alone -- perfection needs no tampering.
And then, right at the bottom of the new board, I noticed something that really caught my attention: "Red wine braised half chicken with mushrooms, green olives and faro." It was the chicken dish I'd had (and not loved) as a Sunday special -- the one I saw as an experiment in need of further tuning up, as a test plate not yet ready for full menu status.
Apparently, Broening felt differently. So I'm going to have to pay another visit to Olivea to check it out.