A chilly Sunday early evening led me and my friends to Toscano on Charles Street in Beacon Hill. I love this street in the winter, it reminds me of Christmas with its twinkling lights and brightly decorated shop windows.
Walking into Toscano’s you are immediately enveloped into warmth that begets a front room and your favorite relations waiting to bid you a welcome with open arms and a big smile. At an early hour of just 6pm, Toscano’s was already busy with early diners. We had no reservations, no problem it would seem – we were shown to a high-top marble table in the small bar area.
Toscano’s is so cozy and richly old world Tuscan. They have a large glass cabinet filled with wine that leads you into the main restaurant, which has a private room separated by beautiful mahogany paneled doors. The main room has comfortable high-back leather seating around white linen covered tables. They have gorgeous, individually painted light shades, which adorn this restaurant in a warming glow.
Our very knowledgeable waiter came over to discuss the many specials for the evening and didn’t miss a beat on remembering what was on offer.
The menu is classic Italian with many fabulous looking house-made pasta dishes and delicious looking fish and meat entrees. They also have an incredibly extensive wine list from the affordable to the outrageous.
Our dinner started with sharing the Bruschetta. The freshest, sweetest tomatoes I have tasted in ages that just burst with flavor on the palate over crusty bread with soft, creamy bites of mozzarella and a brilliant taste of mint.
We all picked pasta dishes for our entrees. How could we not based on options like Gnocchi Quattro Formaggio and Orecchiette Vitello and with being able to order full or half portions.
I was remembering a dish of parpadella with shredded duck that I had the last time I was there and thank goodness it was still on the menu. I ordered the Parpadelle Aantra with Duck Breast Sauce. Thick flat ribbons of al dente, house-made pasta mixed with a salty, mouthwatering duck breast sauce and shredded duck confit mixed throughout the pasta. This dish was exactly how I remembered it – fantastic. I did order a full portion – far too much food but I was thinking more about the next day and being able to enjoy this dish again.
Stacey and Eric ordered the Gnocchi Quattro Formaggio and Kathryn decided on the Rigatoni Norcina. Having tasted both of them, I honestly could have picked any of the three dishes and be very happy.
The gnocchi was perfect as a half portion. Light, fluffy pillows of goodness, rich in four flavors of cheese hitting every taste bud in the mouth like an explosion of cheese lava. Heavenly!
The hint of musky black truffle in the Rigatoni Norcini emanated from the dish tempting us all to dip in and steal Kathryn’s pasta, so we did. Slightly spiced flavorful sausage combined with rigatoni with of course the absolutely wonderful black truffle that can only do magnificent things to any dish.
My friends all decided on a Limoncello while I ordered a glass of Sangiovese. We then took a little look dessert menu. Would it be chocolate, sorbet or something completely different?
We settled on the Tiramisu and boy was it worth it. An indulgent dessert of chocolate and cream abundant with flavors of sweet liquor. Amazing!
I have to share that half way through our evening a twin set and pearl wearing, quite obviously Beacon Hill resident of mature years actually shushed us. Seriously, finger to her mouth with a suggestion that we were talking too loudly. We were actually not talking loudly or causing any sort of ruckus. We were having a lovely time, talking and laughing at a moderate noise level – at least I thought we were! Apart from Madam Beacon Hill, Toscano’s is a delicious restaurant to go to, not only for the food, but for the ambiance and vibe. A mix of clientele from the Beacon Hill early diners to couples of on a date and groups of friends, very casually dressed (like us) out for an early dinner in a warm environment with impeccable service.
A great Sunday evening.
Oh, and I left my pasta in the taxi cab :(. Someone was in for a treat.