E Squared (E2) is one of our favorites and always a place that we recommend, you will leave happy!  It's a restaurant that Mr. A and Mr. L love too ;) As a foursome, we go pretty frequently, but it being in A's backyard, her and her husband are frequent visitors for dinner and their weekend brunch. The food here is amazing, unique, and so flavorful!  They have full plates and tapas to share.  The small plates are plentiful, not like other tapas places where you're cutting 1 item into 8ths to share.  Our method is to share everything and try as much as possible when it comes to E2.  The menu is always changing with what is locally available, but they do have some return appearance from crowd favorites.  We, and this is no exaggeration, order almost every "OMG" plate that is listed on the large chalkboard, and that is just to start.   We then move on to the paper menu and order a few more tapas and then on to the full plates.  So brace yourself. you are in for a long blog :)


We did mention that it is a go-to "Couple's Night" place, but this time we had dined with a few girlfriends.  Ashley2 donated her time, again, as a guest "critic"....you may remember her from our last blog on pumpkin beers.  And, A's friend who has recently moved back to the burgh, Catherine joined in the fun. 


Place: E Squared
Date:10/26/11
BYO'd: 3 Reds(Murphy Goode Pinot Noir , Carlo's Garage Steel City Red-a blend (from Enrico's in the Strip), Chapellet Mountain Cuvee, a blend)  and 1 white (Schmidtt Sonne-a Reisling)
Corkage Fee:  $6/bottle
BYO Buzz: It is AWWWWsome :) You just have to go, you won't regret it!

Atmosphere: Remodeled house, cozy dinning room feel, downstairs "bar" and waiting area is quiet and relaxing.

Service:  Always great and friendly
Appetizers a.k.a OMG's
(their words that we agree with)

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Round #1 : Gorgonzola Mess, Marinated Mozzarella, Grilled Artichoke
The "Mess"-One of the crowd favorites that I had mentioned before. it is a must if it's on the board.  It is so great.  As you can see in the pic, it is Gorgonzola mixed with a whole mess of goodness in an easy to spread form, with the perfect amount of spice to give it a kick.  I wonder how they came up with the name?

Marinated Mozz- It is a very well balanced dish.  It has a generous portion of garlic that gives it a playful kick (and keep those vampires away) coupled with the mellow taste of fresh mozz.  Throw one on the perfectly oven/gril toasted foccacia bread and you've got yourself a scrumptious app.
                                                   
                                                        Grilled Artichokes -A tasty appetizer anywhere else, but out of the three, it really had no  chance.in my opinion you can't beat the Mess, and fresh mozz is a huge fave too.  Nice accompaniment to to a piece of bread slathered in the mess and topped with one of these.


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Round #2 Local beets & arugula salad and Cannellini beans with local greens (A's fave - seriously gets the beans and greens every time.)

The arugula salad was a great match of the spicy bite of the lettuce and the honey/goat cheese that came with it. 

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Beans and greens - warm, cozy, comforting, and delicious.  what more would you want?

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Round #3 Polenta with Eggplant Caponata

Probably one of the best textures in polenta we could think of, pan fried to a crisp on the outside, chewy and full of the eggplant flavor.  Just one negative, could use more eggplant...

Round #4 DESSERT: Beignets and Brownie Mess

Seriously could have been the best brownie/icream combo I've had.  Perfectly cooked brownie, must have been homemade vanilla with the real vanilla flavoring.  To top it off, they added their homemade dark chocolate that is made with lavender and sea salt.  We certainly cleaned this mess up.

The Beignets were great too, more of a custard-y like filling versus a donut texture, lightly fried and soaked up the berry mess sauce perfectly.  For those of you who were like us
The Wine.... somehow only 1 got a picture, but it was the most interesting and fitting being from Enrico's in the strip

All 4 were emptied by the end of the night so who can complain!
The Chapellet is a favorite pass down from A's parents, their blend is great - warm yet crisp for these cool fall nights.
The Pinot was very drinkable, light without being too fruity.
Carlos Steel City Garage Red was definitely different from the rest.  A little thicker, less fruit taste, the sales person said it tastes like how the label looks, and we might have to agree, picture is always worth 1,000 words, right?
The Reisling, in efforts to prolong summer as long as possible (A2's avid goal) we thought this was a nice, less sweet version.  Paired nicely with the spiciness of a few of our choices.

Again, all in all, you can't go wrong here. 
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Comments

05/18/2012 2:46am

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Joseph Aidan
www.arielmed.com

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