I’ve written about Bistro Romano several times with great pleasure. It is one of the best Italian restaurants in Philadelphia. The decor, service, food, wine list and cocktails are all top notch. Last night, my fiancé and I had the pleasure of being invited to sample their new happy hour menu. We had a feeling that the food and drinks would be delicious, and we were right!
There were about a dozen food bloggers and social media people in attendance. We started out with a glass of either red or white sangria. The red sangria was made with red wine, brandy, pomegrante liqueur, orange, and berries. The white sangria was made with white wine, apricot brandy, orange liqueur, green apple, and orange. We both opted for the red, and it was very good. It wasn’t overly sweet, and had a wonderful, balanced taste.
The restaurant next put out a fantastic salumeria and cheese plate. It consisted of cured meats, cornichons, artisanal cheeses, and seasonal accompaniments. It was delicious. Everything was fresh, and the flavors balanced well together.
The next dish was a pork and pancetta polpette, made with tomato sauce, ricotta, and parmigiana. It was so good. It had a wonderful smokey flavor, and you could just taste the freshness of the ricotta and parmigiana. I wouldn’t have minded if they made it a little more spicy, but it was delicious just the way is was.
Next up was a fantastic truffle mac and cheese, topped with a fried egg, and marinated tomatoes. This was simply outstanding. Everything about this dish was delicious. The egg was perfectly runny. The truffle wasn’t overbearing so that it overtook the dish. It may have been one of the best truffle mac and cheese plates I’ve every tasted.
To cleanse our palates, they served us our next cocktail. It was a wonderful romano spritz. It was made with Tito’s vodka, elderflower liqueur, raspberry, and sparkling wine. It was so refreshing, and later on in the evening, Eric said it was his favorite drink of the night.
The next dish was a delicious crab croquette, made with a horseradish cream sauce, and marinated peppers. Sometimes, horseradish can be very strong in taste, and overtake a dish. This was perfect. It still had the distinct taste of horseradish, but it didn’t overpower the dish at all. It complimented it perfectly. You could actually taste crab without all the filler that you get in some places.
We were then treated to a caprese flatbread, made with marinated tomato, buffalo mozzarella, and basil. It was also drizzled with balsamic vinegar. This was so good. It was perfectly cooked, and all the flavors just complimented each other. It’s a classic combination, but if it’s not properly executed, can fall flat. This was delicious.
Time for another cocktail palate cleanser! We were now served an Italian mule, their version of the classic Moscow mule. It was made with Tito’s vodka, aperol, ginger beer, and lime. This was my favorite drink of the night. Eric commented that the ginger beer was not overly sweet, which can ruin a “mule” cocktail. The ginger beer that Bistro Romano uses is so good. It’s not overly sweet, and blended so well with the vodka, aperol, and lime.
The food kept coming! We were next served their crispy duck wings, served with a calabrian chili sauce, and gorgonzola cheese. The duck was cooked perfectly, and the meat just fell off the bone. The calabrian chili added a nice spicy kick, but not too spicy. It was perfectly balanced, and tasted great.
To wrap up this fantastic tasting, we were served a delicious lavender lemonade. It was so good! It was made with lavender and gin, and was the perfect drink to close this meal out. I think it may have been the favorite cocktail of the group! Chef DeLone came out at the end of the meal to introduce himself and talk about the menu. He got a deserved round of applause for a wonderful meal.
I would like to say thank you to Josh at JoshEatsPhilly for the invitation to sample a delicious meal, Bridget for making sure that the service went well, and Chef DeLone for taking the time to talk with us.
I can honestly say, every dish and cocktail we sampled this evening was fantastic. We’ve never had a bad meal at Bistro Romano, and their new happy hour menu is delicious. I know I’ve told you all this before, but you really need to come here and try their food. The decor is simply wonderful, and makes you feel like you are dining in an old world Italian restaurant in Italy. The staff are super friendly, and will go out of their way to make sure your time here is perfect.