Wednesday, October 2, 2013

A Hit and a Miss at Pizzeria Pulcinella

The continuing search for a terrific minestrone soup...

We are now approaching classic soup weather in the Pacific Northwest. You know the signs; it's a season of cool temperature, dark clouds, drizzly rain, plus wind-gusts-to-rattle-the-windows kind of a weather all mixed with glorious days of cool sunshine.  Mmmmm, minestrone soup kind of weather. Lunch at a favorite Italian joint, Pizzeria Pulcinella, should have been the perfect antidote for any dreary weather blues. Well, it almost worked. 

Pulcinella's Neopolitan pizzas and delicious salads have become our go-to favorites, but the daily lunch sheet looked way too tempting to pass up. I'll admit I arrived primed to enjoy a steaming bowl of minestrone, anticipating a tomato-based broth loaded with seasonal vegetables, beans and a handful of pasta.Then again, the panini did sound amazing. The plan was to order a two different items and share both. So I ordered the panini and RL went for the bowl of minestrone with foccaccia. 

We did share my panini, a crisped focaccia thickly layered with various meats and cheeses that was a full-flavored delight. The large serving was more than enough for the two of us.

The much anticipated house minestrone should have been the real treat, but didn't deliver. It looked unappealingly murky with no evidence of any tomatoes, winter greens or pasta. Moving past the visual I dove into RL's bowl for a taste test.  The first spoonful of broth lacked flavor, and a second spoonful confirmed the bland taste. It was an okay chicken-broth based cabbagey soup, but it wasn't the minestrone I was after. so I graciously let RL enjoy the rest of the bowl.  The attentive waitress offered soup refills, but we politely declined. 

Pulcinella remains on the list of good local pizzerias, and we will return again and again for pizza and salad. However, the minestrone soup search goes on. It might be time to try another recipe at home.

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