Dining Out: Dino, Cleveland Park

Since my last post I injured my hip, broke my wrist snowboarding in Tahoe and was laid off. What’s new with you?

But it’s not all bad news. I finally got to have a meal at a restaurant I’ve been walking by on my way to movies for ages- Dino.

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Dino has what you’d expect: the usual pasta and game meats and all the traditional Italian dishes. The difference being that the ingredients are locally sourced when possible- Chef Dean Gold makes sure you know where your meal comes from by listing its provenance on the menu. Which made for a meal that gave me Rome flashbacks without the sticker shock.

The pasta is hand made and it shows- it can be chunky and uneven, but it’s always perfectly cooked and the perfect canvas for cinghiale (a wild boar ragu), the house bolognese, or a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of parmesan.

The desserts may look like the same old on paper (I love panna cotta, but is it new? No.) but with fresh citrus accents they take on a new character. I’d go back in a heartbeat for authentic dishes like the sardines- full body, head on, moist and yet flaky- the perfect way to start three courses of fresh, delicious Italian that tastes like you’re hanging out at a friend’s house in Tuscany instead of across the street from the Uptown.

Order your three courses (appetizer, entree, and dessert) before 7pm for $27 a person. After 7, it’s $37 and you get a glass of wine. It’s like the Euro’s in our favor for a change.

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