Bravo Cucina Italiana

I am always leery of going into national chain restaurants, especially Italian restaurants.  I have this fear that it will be a homogenized American version of what an Italian dish should be, and it is usually bland.  I was very surprised and happy when we tried Bravo Cucina Italiana.  I am not saying that the food is four stars and should be Michelin rated, but it is far superior to a lot of “Italian” eateries that I have been to.  The other thing that endeared me is when I asked if something could be replaced with another item, the server did not say “let me go see” and responded with a “yes.”  For an example, I do not tolerate Romano cheese, for some reason I always smell and taste soap (I know that it sounds silly, but it is a peccadillo of mine, and I just refrain from that cheese).

 MI Bravo Cucina Italiana MB

We do not make it a habit of constantly dining at one particular restaurant, but we have dined at this establishment a few times, and if necessary I know that it would be a safe choice when we are out of town and this may be one of the existing choices, though I do prefer trying local talent when it is possible.  Be that as it may, there are a few dishes that we know we enjoy.  They have a Sangiovese Braised Beef Ravioli that is very tasty.  Another dish that we enjoy is a Shrimp Far Diavolo Campanelle which is done in a “Palomino” style tomato cream sauce, the Campanelle refers to the special pasta that is used in the dish.

 Duckhorn Paraduxx Napa 2006

I am also impressed with their wine list.  A couple of times we have ordered a Duckhorn Vineyards wine like the Paraduxx 2006.  I think that it is a play on words for the winery because the common thinking was that a wine that is a blend of Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc, while all of these varietals grow very well in the Napa Valley it is a paradox of a blend.  Since they are Duckhorn, it is Paraduxx and the labels usually show a different pair of ducks each year, as in 2006 they showed Cinnamon Teal Ducks.  I find that this wine works very well with robust foods, especially with a tomato sauce basis.  I feel that a good Zinfandel can work as well as a Sangiovese based wine.  The funny thing is that I am not a major fan of Zinfandel, but when it is blended I find it very appealing.

About thewineraconteur

A non-technical wine writer, who enjoys the moment with the wine, as much as the wine. Instagram/thewineraconteur Facebook/ The Wine Raconteur
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2 Responses to Bravo Cucina Italiana

  1. vinovintage1 says:

    YES! We felt the same exact way a few weeks ago when every restaurant nearby had an hour wait and we were starving. A Bravo opened up at our local mall not too long ago so we figured why not…especially since they were able to seat us right away. They even accommodated us with Matzah crackers for our spinach artichoke dip because it was Passover. Food was good. Great wine list too.

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