Ah, spring. Bikini season is officially here. For the rest of the country. It's always here, but... well you get the idea.
As we approach summer many a restaurant is lightening its offerings to keep the hot (we mean temperature) and scantily clad happy for the beach season.
To celebrate the change in weather and bounty of the season, Casa D'Angelo in Boca Raton has released a new menu with a myriad of refreshing and dietary conscious dishes as well as more handmade pastas -- 'cause why not?
We went to in test out the new selections.
"It's been years since Casa D'Angelo has launched a new menu, and we felt spring was the perfect time to introduce something new," says owner Angelo Elia. "During this season, markets are filled with fresh and vibrant produce. Combining those ingredients with incredible fresh fish, like branzino or yellowtail snapper, we give our guests plenty of new flavors and colors while staying true to our Italian culture."
Basically, the restaurant nixed its 22 daily specials in favor of a more manageable seven. Many of the former dishes of the day made it to the new permanent menu.
To start, it's added a wide selection of new appetizers ($8-$19) like the chargrilled jumbo prawns and artichokes with Runway arugula and lemon oil. Enough for two, it comes with four sweet shrimp and a vibrant mix of greens and tomatoes with strong citrus flavors.
For lighter meal options, the restaurant added a number of entree salads ($12-$22), including porcini e speck with baby arugula, sautéed porcini mushrooms, shaved Reggiano, Speck prosciutto and lemon olive oil dressing. Again, the portion is heaping, enough to serve two as an appetizer or an entire meal on its own.
A larger selection of handmade pastas ($18-$24) have been featured, with some healthier options included. On the lighter side, a farro penne (made out of wholesome spelt wheat) with broccoli, chicken sausage, and cannellini beans is now offered. For those looking to try some spring lamb, a pappardelle with lamb ragout is now featured daily; it's composed Chianti braised leg of lamb, Sicilian aged ricotta, and Tuscan herbs.
The real draw for the season is the selection of seafood ($30-$36). According to executive chef Rickie Piper, it's only going to grow as the weather heats up.
"The more and more into summer we get, we going to start running lighter," says Piper. "We'll be turning to more seafood like short shell crab and clams and things like that."
In addition to a fish of the day -- it was halibut with a nice light tomato sauce on our visit -- the menu features constants like oven-roasted branzino with asparagus, Roma tomato, fresh oregano and lemon garlic. Sautéed jumbo tiger shrimp with Gaeta olives, spicy tomato sauce and broccoli rapini is another fixed selection.
Boca Raton is located at 171 East Palmetto Park Road in Boca Raton. Call 561-996-1234, or visit casa-d-angelo.com.
Follow Sara Ventiera on Twitter, @saraventiera.
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