569 Columbus Ave, Boston, MA www.srvboston.com
SRV is a new restaurant that just opened on January 17, 2016 in the South End in Boston. It is owned by The Coda Group which also owns Salty Pig, Coda, and Canary Square. SRV is a “Venetian Bacaro” (a traditional Venetian wine bar) serving temporary Italian cuisine and small plates. The executive chefs, Michael Lombardi and Kevin O’Donnell, came from the Salty Pig. I am sharing my experience at this restaurant with you all and have added pictures and descriptions below. The menu is not yet online, so I took a picture of the menus and added them in this blog post for you to see!
The atmosphere is modern and sleek with dim lighting. Above the wooden dining tables hangs old crystal pitchers and vases that have been turned into lamps. They have tall windows in the front of the restaurant which bring in lots of natural light. There is a 20-seat bar that serves an extensive wine list, Italian craft beers, and extravagant cocktails.
We decided to try it out for our first time on the night of the snowstorm #jonas. There were 6 of us total, so we put our names in with the hostess when we got there around 7:45 pm and ordered drinks by the bar area while we waited. It was so busy regardless of the snow and bad driving conditions, but we were fine with waiting and just excited to try out this new restaurant. After about an hour, we were finally seated. If you are going on a Friday or Saturday night, I suggest trying to make a reservation or going ahead of time to put your name on the wait list. If you are brave and like to new, unique foods, have an extensive palate, and can spend a few extra bucks, then this is the place for you. If you are a picky eater and have a big appetite, I suggest somewhere else.
We were with two other couples: one couple being a vegetarian and a vegan. The restaurant was able to accommodate their dietary needs which was another reason why we were able to come. Something negative I remember was that we waited very long for the table and the restaurant ran out of bread and we were starving. I think they are still trying to work out the kinks.
For drinks, we ordered the Livon Pinot Grigio from Northern Italy, the Aperal Spritz (aperol, prosecco, soda), the Bicicletta (Campari, white wine, dry vermouth), and Allagash white beer. The Livon Pinto Grigio was very good; it was light and refreshing and I would definitely recommend it for having with seafood, light cheeses, or salads.
Our waitress was very nice and brought us waters right away. She answered any questions we had about the menu and gave us her honest opinion about which plates to order. For apps, we started off with the Quail Egg & Anchovy plate, the Baby Octopus (preserved lemon, pine nut, celery hearts), and the Italian Chicories (gorgonzola dolce, walnut, and valpolicella dressing). Our friends ordered the Baccala Mantecato (black bread, herbs, garlic) and the Suca Baruca (heirloom squash, brutti ma buoni, lardo, quince mostarda). Then came the Fegato alla Veneziana (calf’s liver, Vidalia onion, sage) which no one at our table was a fan of. Our favorites were the Quail Egg and the Squash dishes.
For our main courses, my boyfriend and I shared the Casunziei (ravioli with beet, ricotta, tarragon, poppy seed, nori) and the Buckwheat Bigoli (duck ragu, soffrito, sage). I preferred the beet ravioli dish over the duck ragu, but I probably wouldn’t order either of them again.
Our vegetarian/vegan friends ordered the Buckwheat Bigoli (vegan pasta) with red sauce, and the Squid Ink Risotto (cuttlefish, parsley, preserved lemon). They both liked them and were happy with their meals. The other couple we were with also ordered the Polpette (pork & beef meatball, tomato, pecorino romano) which they loved, but were only given two small meatballs. The picture below to the right is the Gnocchi (lamb neck, kalette, yogurt, garlic) which was disliked by our friends who ordered it.
I give this restaurant an overall rating of 3.5 stars. I based this on 4 starts for atmosphere, 5 stars for creativity, 3 stars for service, and 3 stars for taste.
Disclaimer: I was not paid for my review and all opinions are my own.