There were two of us dining and four choices for antipasti. What to do? Since Ai Fiori focuses on seafood, we chose the two most seafood-y appetizers: the mediterranean sardines with tomato confit and the squid ink pasta with scallop.
The size of the dishes was infinitesimalthe sort of tiny portion size for which fancier restaurant are often made fun of, but we couldn't fault a single thing in these and we assumed the small amounts were in proportion to the greater quality of the ingredients used therein. Turns out, we were right. Plus, we can never say no to squid ink pasta.
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At the suggestion of our super nice server Ben, we went with the Razzaskate wing with spinachinstead of the cod. Our dining partner went basic with the Tortelliricotta, mascarpone and boschetto cheese ravioli with red wine glaze. The skate had that perfectly brown and crisp surface that just looks like it will melt in your mouth.
We tried the ravioli, which our friend pronounced "the best thing ever," but it definitely could've used more filling to bump up the taste of the rich cheese therein. As for our skate, we had to restrain ourselves from licking the plate.
Two choices means the decision was wasy: dark chocolate cremeaux with chocolate chip gelato and the rosemary apple tart with vanilla gelato. What the menu didn't specify was that the dark chocolate option includes little flakes of edible gold leaf, which puts happiness into the heart of any diner eating like a king on a serious budget. It's that special touchyou know? For a moment, you are the pauper paying $24.07 for the special menu and then the next moment, your fork is deep underneath this sparkling bit of luxury that magically dissolves in your mouth, and you are the prince.
Needless to say, the chocolate cake was amazing. The rosemary apple, not so much. It was too caramelized-y for us, if you can understand that. Too sweet on the apple slices and the vanilla gelato too plain.
Head over to our sister site, HotelChatter, HERE, to read about and see photos of the $19 Absinthe we ordered after lunch.
[All photos: Cynthia Drescher for Jaunted]