Thursday, January 5, 2012

Three desserts at Nicli Antica Pizzeria

Nicli Antica Pizzeria on Urbanspoon
Even before our little Food Bloggers dine-out group tried three pizzas at Nicli Antica Pizzeria, I was asking about dessert. There was one chocolate cake "daily special" which turned out to be on the regular menu. That the server didn't know suggested it was a recent change (hey -- keep your servers updated, eh?).
There's no dessert menu online, so be sure to ask about it. And do it early because the light pizzas that are prepped quickly can lead you to ordering more to fill up, and then have no room for dessert. Eat strategically both to fit it in and keep your weight loss budget.

We tried three desserts (picture here): A Panna Cotta, a Chocolate Cake, and a Tiramisu.

The Panna Cotta came popped out onto a plate with what looked like red wine and softened (soaked?) chestnuts. There was a single ladyfinger on top. The panna cotta itself was strangely bland. Bland was the odd theme of the whole night, in fact -- so much so that I am suspicious that I was somehow ill and not tasting flavours as strongly as I should have. At least one of our fellow diners, Tess M. on Yelp, absolutely loved the Panna Cotta and calls it "AMAZING".

The Chocolate Cake was profoundly disappointing for me. After having some excellent real "cakes" at The WallFlower and Bandidas Tacqueria, and an excellent chocolate cream "cake" from Organic Lives, my chocolate cake standards had been elevated. At the very least, I expected a suitably moist, dark, very chocolatey cake.
What we got at Nicli Antica Pizzeria was barely a cake. It had the correct shape and okay chocolate flavour, but it was dry and crumbly, to the point of feeling powdery and tasting like flour in my mouth. It came with a bit of cream on top and some very thinly sliced caramelized (looked like lightly blow-torched) orange slices, but neither of those rescued the cake.

The most worthwhile thing that night was the tiramisu. It looked more like layers of cake rather than having any ladyfingers discernable, but the whole thing was light and fluffy, and strong with cocoa flavour. The first stand-out strong flavour I had all night at Nicli Antica Pizzeria.

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