To celebrate the great success at the Race for the Cure Health Expo, my friend and our significant others wanted to go out to Toro Bravo for dinner. Much to our dismay, the restaurant was packed (not surprising on a late summer Saturday evening) and we were too hungry to wait for an hour and a half. Knowing this was a possibility, I thought of a few alternatives, one being Ciao Vito on NE Alberta. I had never been and we all thought it be a reasonably substitute. We gave them a call to find out if there was a wait and were told there was not.
After driving around traffic barriers and maneuvering around parked cars in the Alberta district (just our luck, the street fair was that day), we finally made it only to find out there was a 15-30 minute wait. However, we could sit outside. What happened in the 15 minute drive over to make the restaurant go from dead to full, we didn't know. We opted to freeze our rear ends off outside in order to get some food.
The appetizers were very well made. Shawn got the meatballs--pretty basic, but done well. Eve-Maridy ordered the caprese salad, which was also nice. I definitely hit the jackpot with my salad, which had Spanish chorizo, butter lettuce, and cheese (can't remember what kind...this is what happens when I wait a couple of weeks to post). I sopped up every drop with the bread.
After eating our appetizers, we were finally seated inside to defrost. I ordered the special of the day consisting of halibut over gnocchi (my favorite) with porcini mushrooms. The presentation was beautiful, the fish was perfectly cooked, but the gnocchi fell short. Very short. They were hard and did nothing for the dish. I was disappointed by everything but the fish. Shawn ordered the eggplant parmesan and said it was good, but not great. It seemed odd to me that after such delicious appetizers, we would leave less than impressed.
Overall, I may try it out again, but I'm not overly anxious to try it out again. After all, this is Portland there are so many restaurants to try and never enough time or money to hit them all.