I have many, many careers that I so wish I had pursued (the main one being journalism) - cop, lawyer, and my favorite - restaurant reviewer. GET PAID TO EAT??? So, I have decided to just start blogging about every single restaurant I frequent (don't worry - I is poor, so this will only happen about once a year). Maybe...............just maybe one of YOU will pay me! How sweet would that be?!
What is my experience to do this? (Sometimes I think more than some of the reviewers I read.) I attempt to feed six people three times a day with quality, healthy, cost effective food. So, here is my very first review EVER! (Aren't you excited?)
I went to Lorenzo's last night with my husband. If you have never had the distinct pleasure of eating at Lorenzo's, picture a modestly sized kitchen and that is the size of the entire restaurant. It is located in a nondescript, some might say interesting strip mall in the medical center. You could easily miss this gem of a place. No matter how bright and sunny it is outside as soon as you enter Lorenzo's the light is soft and the windows are covered. If this sounds dark and dreary, it's not. It's romantic and at the same time comforting.
Because Lorenzo's is so tiny although you are always greeted by a waiter, waitress, bartender, or cook you are sometimes also greeted by fellow patrons. Don't be alarmed, and by all means greet them back! Get there before the lunch or dinner hour because once it fills up - there are no seats! Duh! Last night they were offering potential customers wine while they waited (outside in the strip mall), but I am not sure if that is always the case (or if any of those people even come back). We were seated right away and right away a friendly waitress was there to take our drink order.
I started with a lovely Merlot. Now I am no connoisseur, nor do I particularly like wine, so I love a restaurant where I can go in and not feel like a complete moron and just say, "I'd like a glass of Merlot, please." And I know that it will actually taste like a Merlot (as opposed to 90% rubbing alcohol) and I am not asked 1000 questions as to which region of the world would I like my Merlot to come from, etc., etc. Because, frankly, this makes me feel like an idiot and if I sense this is going to happen - I will just skip the wine altogether.
We were immediately brought our drinks and some garlic bread that was crisp on the outside and soft on the inside. The bread is sliced fairly thin so that it is approximately five inches long and about half an inch thick. Not only is the flavor of the bread heavenly - the size is perfect. If I had not been really hungry I would have just eaten the bread and drank my wine.
But, my salad and appetizer were coming, so I tried to practice self-restraint. The salad was good. Typical Italian - green, a few tomatoes, a few olives, a red onion, and a generous helping of Italian dressing. The appetizer we love is called Artichokes Pellicci. My husband is good at eating something one time and then being able to closely replicate it at home. So, truthfully, I eat his version (which is quite delicious) of Artichokes Pellicci at least twice a month. The real thing at Lorenzo's tastes like artichokes bathed in garlic butter and then baked so that the cheese on top forms a thin crust. It is served on your table in a hot plate. It is so yummy because you can taste all the flavors and they compliment each other - taste and texture - perfectly.
Last night I ordered one of the specials - Shrimp Corinna. This was a breaded shrimp, but not deep fried. It was served in a white wine sauce that had a hint of lemon. It was perfect. The slight crustiness of the shrimp along with its flavor was excellent in the lemony sauce. Loved the portion size, too. There was a side of pasta drenched in garlic butter. I love garlic butter, but if I had one suggestion for Lorenzo's (and believe me I can only think of one) it would be go easy on the garlic. I feel like a dragon for several days after eating there. I don't know if the pasta is home-made or not, but let me tell you this pasta is heavenly. It is light and airy pasta (not at all like the kind from a box that I cook up and serve at my house).
My husband ordered lasagna and the tomato sauce is amazing. Amazingly, it tastes like tomato!
For dessert we ordered a chocolate/walnut pie and tiramisa. I love all things chocolate, so for me this pie is pure heaven. It has a wonderfully thick lower crust (where you will find the walnuts!) and then an almost puddingy chocolate topped with a white cream. It's delish. I am not particularly fond of tiramisa, but I love the tiramisa at Lorenzo's because of the strong, rich caramel flavor. It is distinct and I like it.
So, that's my review. I highly recommend this restaurant. Here's my official rating key and rating:
4 stars = I love it and love to get a babysitter to go there or would risk taking the kids.
3 stars = I really like it.
2 stars = It might be better than eating at home depending on how tired I am.
1 star = I'll eat at home next time, thanks!
no stars = Give me my money back. Boo.
Atmosphere - 4 stars
Food - 3 and 3/4 stars
Service - 4 stars
Worth the money? = 4 stars