November 18, 2019

SPEAKING ITALIAN

A new menu at Americano has us raising questions

The nice part about working practically living at The Joule is that we eat really, really well. We bounce from CBD Provisions to Americano to Mirador and back—all while creating our particular routines and rotations of go-to dishes. Not only can I list my likely orders based on the restaurant and time of day—I can list my colleagues as well. Case in point: weekday late lunch? It’s Americano and our office order includes the usual pizzas, caesar and shaved cauliflower salads, and an order of fried olives.

Last week, things changed a little. News that Americano was updating its menu was met with equal parts excitement and concern. Changing how? Which dishes are staying? Which are going? Will we still have fried olives?

Answers came when the new menu launched this week and the unanimous ruling is in its favor. The classics (aforementioned in our order) have stayed on, while a whole new gang of options have joined the mix. New pizzas (on a slightly new-and-improved) crust include a delightfully fresh burrata pizza with heirloom tomatoes and pesto and a bacon pizza with spiced honey. There’s also a spicy and sweet chili pizza that pairs well with an ice-cold Peroni.

New caprese salad, ribollita, and sweet chili pizza

Sharable plates—salumi and cheese, a giant garlic knot, fritto misto…—are a nice addition to the menu because of the update to the dining space. New rows of banquettes have increased bar seating and make it the perfect spot to meet for post-work drinks.

In pasta news, the selection has almost doubled. We’ve yet to try them all (it’s only been a week, ok?) but with classics like bolognese pappardelle, spaghetti carbonara, and lobster ravioli, it’s a mission we’re looking forward to.

The new menu does have us raising a few more questions though. With elevated ingredients and some extra culinary touches, we’re left pondering. Where do Castelvetrano olives come from? What makes a mozzarella a Bocconcini mozzarella? What is colatura?*  Good kinds of questions to break one out of the routine. —Michelle Padgett

The Details: Try the new lunch and dinner menus at Americano, 1530 Main Street. New brunch menus on the way. Complimentary valet up to 90 minutes. 

*Answers to the above: Castelvetrano, Sicily; when it’s a small ball of young mozzarella usually made from cow’s milk; an Italian fish sauce made from anchovies.