i stumbled upon this restaurant walking up park street one afternoon.  intrigued by the wine list and the michelin recommended sticker out front, i had to go in and try it.  that was 3 years ago and this continues to be one of my go-to restaurants in the bay area.

there is really nothing i don’t love here.  it’s italian fare and i think it’s pretty authentic.  i love their ciccheti (small nside dishes) that range from pickled what nots to pates to crudo.  i love that they give you the option to make dishes small or large portions – that means more to try and more to share!  they have tasting menus!  whenever i bring someone new, i insist on the tasting menu – it’s a great price and you get an idea of the range that this place has to offer.

my favorite dish at bellanico (also one of my favorite dishes period) is their swiss chard malfatti with browned butter, sage, and grana padano.  it is rich but it is delicious.  the texture of the chard and cheese with the brown butter melts in your mouth.  one should not eat more than 1-2 at a time, else that would be shear gluttony.  but i have to eat this every time i go – tasting menu or not!

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