By Jeremy Austin and Eryn Finnegan Staff Reporter and President
The Fish N’ Chips had crispy, flaky skin, while retaining flavorful juices inside. (Photo by Jeremy Austin)
The Flyer’s dam good food recently visited Calzolaio Pasta Company, a higher-end restaurant located in a tall, dark red building lined with fairy lights and surrounded by a river cutting the road off from the parking lot. A fifteen minute drive from the UMF campus in Wilton, ME, Calzolaio is a place with an expansive menu and creative flavor combos, but runs high price-wise, so be ready to splurge.
After sliding down the steep hill to the door, these reporters were greeted with soft folk music, a black and white film on one screen, and hockey on the screen behind the bar. While a reservation was not necessary for entry, every entrant was asked if they had one, and for good reason; the restaurant began to fill quickly when we were getting ready to leave. Thankfully, our writers managed to slide in just before the dinner rush.
Our reporters were seated at a comfortably small table, with an assortment of red and white flowers in the center alongside tall bottles of olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Wanting to live a little, one reporter ordered an Italian Pilsner beer while the other ordered a pineapple vodka and raspberry mixed drink called the “C’monIwannadrinkya.” Even before dinner was served, our reporters were well on their way to an entertaining evening.
Crispy bacon coiled loosely around shining white scallops, coated in a thin glaze of maple syrup set the tone for their taste buds. Though our reporters were only given four scallops total, it was an appropriately sized appetizer, just enough food to leave a good taste and get them revved up for their entrees.
Staff Reporter Jeremy Austin ordered the Fish N’ Chips. Calzolaio’s rendition of the dish consisted of a plentiful helping of batter-fried haddock accompanied with hearty, crispy curly fries. A small ramakan of tartar sauce sat nestled between the mountains of food. The sauce was not only delicious when liberally applied to the batter-fried haddock, but it proved to be a delicious accompaniment to the curly fries as well.
Journalism club president Eryn Finnegan ordered “Tenderloin Tips and Ravioli Bluebeard,” which consisted of several juicy steak tips on a kabob skewer, ravioli with a blue/purple mushroom sauce reminiscent of a blueberry sauce, and a small pot of sweet potatoes. A bite with all four components at the same time was a well crafted symphony of flavor, and each component separately was also tasty. The exterior of the steak was crunchy and charred to a crust, with the inside still juicy and flavorful, the standout component of the meal based on taste, but the blue mushroom sauce was both exciting visually and regarding flavor. This is a good sauce to try for eaters who may not like the texture of mushrooms, but still enjoy the flavor.
It was halfway through this portion of the meal where Austin decided to try one of Calzolaio’s wines, and he ordered a glass of pinot noir. With the deep, sultry red of the wine and its rich and dry yet fruity taste, it proved to be a satisfying beverage indeed. While one writer tapped out for the evening after her entree, the other nobly ended his meal with a divine piece of Toll House pie and a hot cup of black coffee.