>> Wednesday, February 29, 2012
I’ve always found that North Americans tend to rush through lunch. It could be because we don’t necessarily have the luxury to sit in outdoor cafes for hours upon hours to enjoy our mid day meal. Unlike the Europeans, where it’s accepted to lounge around the bistro or trattoria for many hours during the day, here we eat, pay and leave, as simple as that. Plus, I don’t think many companies here tend to accept that their employees disappear for 2-3 hours at a time during the day. So until our expectations somehow change, I will just have to enjoy lunch on my days off, which is what I tried to do over a few yummy plates at Sugo.
Atmosphere: Petite cozy dining space with red accents highlighting a warm interior.
Price Range: Mid $10s-$30+
Food and Wine: Sugo’s menu is created daily by the Chef dependent on what’s currently fresh and in season. Many of the dishes refer to ‘del giorno’ or of the day. Inspired by that we decided to order two plates that change based on that concept.
After being seated, our server (who seemed a bit frazzled and brash) immediately wanted to take our orders, which threw me off a bit. However, after asking for a bit more time to peruse the menu we did figure out that we indeed wanted to stick to the different specials of the day.
The first being the Roasted Vegetable Flatbread, where the vegetables vary based on what’s in season. Our flatbread featured squashes, onions and bits of mushroom all topped with a thin layer of melted mozzarella and a sweet balsamic reduction. The flatbread itself was crispy rather than doughy and the plate lends itself well to an appetizer.
We decided to share the Ragu of the Day. Duck was the meat of the day and served in a hearty tomato based sauce with penne pasta. There was a fair amount of the ground duck and I did find it a bit gamey at the beginning but the sauce was robust enough to hold its own and wasn’t overtaken by the gaminess. The pasta was cooked to a nice al dente, chewy without being crunchy.
My Pick: Roasted Vegetable Flatbread
Overall: Aside from the interesting service we received that day, which set us in the wrong direction at first. Eventually the food at Sugo pulled us back. The dishes were definitely meant to be savoured. So here’s hoping that one day North Americans start to realize that every meal should be enjoyed to its fullest and it’s not just being full that matters.
Sugo Caffe Italia
1214 9 Ave SE