Holiday Dinner Date Ideas: Tappo Wine Bar & Restaurant
The holidays are here and it’s a great time to catch up with friends and family over great food and wine. I took a friend of mine down to the Distillery District to catch the final day of the Christmas Market, with its lovely lights and fabulous vendors for a dinner at Tappo Wine Bar & Restaurant (55 Mill Street).
For those who are looking for a holiday dinner, New Years eve intimate affair or somewhere to impress a first date, Tappo is definitely the place to go. Once we entered the restaurant through the large wooden doors and were greeted by the warm wait staff, the candle light restaurant was romantic, busy and inviting. My friend and I were placed into a corner that gave us the space we needed to catch up with one another but also enjoy the sights and sounds that Tappo had to offer, which included one restaurant goer having a photo shoot with his wife at the table.
Tappo serves up an American-Italian style food, not overly pretentious. They also do a fabulous job at catering to vegan and vegetarian requests while knowledgeable waitstaff knowing what exactly has gone into each dish, so that the customer does not conflict with any dietary request. With our first appetizers, I had ordered their Arrancini Ai Funghi ($13), a delightful mix of field mushrooms & truffle risotto balls in herbed panko along a tomato stew. My friend ordered the Insalata di Zucchini Alla Griglia ($16), grilled zucchini alongside buffalo mozzarella, basil, cherry tomatos and a lemon chili dressing. The Mushroom Risotto Balls were perfectly cooked, not dry at all with the tomato adding a nice acid to the finish. The Zucchini paired along side the buffalo mozzarella, oils and lemon chili dressing gave it a fresh taste, almost summer like.
Next up, we had our main dishes which flowed nicely over a few wine pairings. I had taken to ordering the special of the day, which was an incredible Steak Sirloin with Potato Au Jus ($30). My friend has ended up ordering the Ravioli Ai Funghi Di Bosco ($24). When the steak was brought over to me and I took my first bite, I was in heaven. The meat was tender and juicy, not overcooked. Plus, the size of the sirlon was not too big but definitely not too small. The perfect size. The potatoes had a nice garlic taste to them but nothing too overpowering. Plus, the au jus added a nice flavoring. Each bite was like heaven. The ravioli was succulent and creamy. The cream sauce complimented the mushroom and sun-dried tomato perfectly, adding a nice complex mix of flavors.
The great thing about our dinner date at Tappo was as each dish was brought out to us, it was never rushed or hurried. We had a beautiful evening with a great staff who presented to us an array of great dishes. We were given a sufficient amount of time between each dish to feel ready for the next and by the time we had made it to dessert, we were so satisfied. We ended up sharing a Flourless Chocolate Cake with Berries over Americanos.
Tappo is perfect for any evening and for any type of event. Great food, well-cooked, with a romantic setting and entirely unpretentious. Once you go once, you’ll leave a longtime fan.
All Photos by Lori Steeves