After having an amazing meal at Enoteca Sociale over a year ago, I felt I was due for another visit. This time around, there were six of us… and let me tell you, it ain’t easy getting a weekend reservation at this small restaurant for six people!
If your party is small and they’re fully booked, you can always try walking in. They save space for walk-ins every night.
Enoteca Sociale has a cozy and rustic feel to it. The atmosphere is casual and the servers are incredibly knowledgeable. Our server in particular was great! He was very enthusiastic and we could tell he had a great passion for the food served here. I love this in a server. It just makes you excited to eat!
We started off with some complimentary bread – Rosemary Focaccia and Sourdough, served with olive oil. Both types of bread were fantastic but if I had to choose, the focaccia would be my choice.
The bread was the perfect vehicle for our order of House Cured & Hand Sliced Tamworth/Berkshire Prosciutto ($12). The prosciutto had been cured in-house for 15 months! Sounds like an awfully long time but it certainly paid off. The prosciutto was delicious and had a silky texture to it. If you’re a fan of cured meats, this is not to be missed!
You can’t come to Enoteca Sociale without ordering the Arancini – with mozzarella di bufala and ‘nduja ($12). In my opinion, they make the best in the city and were even better than I remembered! Each risotto ball was perfectly crisp on the outside and oozing with cheesy goodness on the inside. Make sure you get some of the sauce with each bite as their tomato sauce is really something!
The bowl was clean when our server came to pick it up. No sauce went to waste – we ate every trace of remaining tomato sauce with the bread we received at the beginning of the meal.
The last appetizer we shared was the Lamb Crudo – with flat bread and house made hot sauce ($14). The crudo tasted quite a bit like beef tartare and didn’t have that strong lamb flavour which could be a good or bad thing depending on your preference. The crudo was well seasoned and I particularly enjoyed the addition of the hot sauce which gave it a nice kick.
We tried two different pastas this evening, the first being the Toasted Spaghetti – with bottarga, chili & garlic ($17). I was debating between this and the cauliflower agnolotti but I was sold after our server told me this was one of the staff favourites.
This pasta lived up to its expectations – everyone at the table loved it. I could really taste the flavour from the toasting and the entire dish was packed full of flavour from the bottarga and garlic. Absolutely delicious!
I also tried the Linguine – with side striped prawns, fennel and tomato ($21). Like my spaghetti, the linguine was cooked to a perfect al dente and was lightly coated with sauce. It’s not quite as exciting as the toasted spaghetti but it was a simple dish done very well.
I have to mention something about the pasta portion sizes here…they aren’t small! After our appetizers (two orders of prosciutto, two orders of arancini and one lamb crudo) and three pastas (one toasted spaghetti and two linguines) between 6 people, we were getting pretty full.
But there was more coming! Our first non-pasta entrée was the “Hooked” Lingcod – with linguica sausage, chickpea and tomato broth ($30) which came in the form of a hearty stew. The bite-sized chunks of fish were well cooked and the sausage gave the stew a nice saltiness. Another tasty dish!
Our table had two orders of PEI 14oz Grass Fed Striploin – with spinach, pine nuts, raisins and mascarpone ($36). Yes, two orders. I think we all forgot how big 14oz is! The striploin had a fantastic sear on it and the meat was well-seasoned and moist. I really enjoyed the sweetness from the raisins and the mascarpone gave the dish a nice creaminess. Needless to say, we had to take some of this home in a doggy bag.
While we were all stuffed at this point, I couldn’t resist ordering dessert. Enoteca Sociale has a short dessert menu which features only 3 desserts which made it easy for us. The only one we didn’t order was the pine nut custard tart.
First up was the Caramelized Banana-Ricotta Parfait – with a chocolate pizzele and walnuts ($10). If you’re on the fence about ordering dessert because you’re too full, I’d recommend ordering this…you won’t feel (too) guilty about eating it! The parfait was so light and fluffy and not too sweet at all. I loved the crunch from the walnuts and what tasted like brittle.
The other dessert we shared was the Sticky Toffee Pudding – with cardamom syrup and vanilla bean ice cream ($10) which turned out to be another amazing dish. I really enjoyed the flavour from the cardamom syrup and could’ve easily eaten the whole thing myself.
Like I said, it has been a while since I first visited Enoteca Sociale but their food was just as good as I remembered!
At a glance:
• Serving delicious, rustic Italian dishes
• They make some of the best arancini in the city
• Casual atmosphere; cozy and rustic decor
• Located on Dundas and Dovercourt
Ratings (out of 5):
• Food: 4.5 stars
• Service: 4.5 stars
• Atmosphere: 4 stars