photo mix found on the Contogna website

Yesterday found me taking BART into the City to meet my dear friend MAS for luncheon, at a lovely restaurant that I hadn’t tried before, Cotogna. Turns out, they are the sister restaurant to Quince, which inhabits the space once occupied by Myth, a restaurant that Ted and I happened upon one night several years ago.

It was the kind of lunch that Ladies of Leisure enjoy…we had appetizers, potato gnocchi with castelmagno cheese, wine (I had wine, MAS had sparkling water), veggies, and a delicious apple-quince crostata with vanilla ice cream (seen in the picture there).  We lingered for well over 3 hours, catching up and telling our stories to each other. Marilee and I met back in graduate school, and I do adore her.  She’s smart, hilarious, effervescent, and fun.  A real kick in the pants. 😉

(image found here)

kick in the pants, informal
a. someone or something that is very exciting, enjoyable, amusing, etc.: I think you’ll like her, she’s a real kick in the pants.

definition found here

The food was delicious. One of our appetizers was a little pot of ricotta cheese with sun-choke, hazelnuts, and toasted baguette. The other was Asian pear, prosciutto & smoked almonds. The sauce for the pears was marvelous, and truthfully, the pear with the ricotta made me happy to marry the two appetizers. And prosciutto…it was really, really thin and lovely. The gnocchi was light and fluffy, the cheese creamy and not overpoweringly rich. I love love love gnocchi, and this was some of the best I’ve had. Funny, because another of the best gnocchis was at Myth, and no, the same people are not involved in both restaurants. There’s just good gnocchi karma in the building, perhaps. Last was the apple-quince crostata with ice cream, which was light and not too sweet.

The atmosphere at Cotogna is casual, though you wouldn’t feel overdressed in a suit and heels. The service was attentive, friendly, and helpful. There aren’t very many restaurants on my side of the tunnel where they clear your silverware between courses, rather than suggesting that you keep your dirty fork and knife for the next course. It’s one criteria for good service for me. Another is that they didn’t clear my plate when I had finished eating, they waited until MAS had also finished her meal. Yet another was that they stayed on top of our water situation, and that they spoke knowledgeably about the menu and the wine list. It was a lovely afternoon, and I recommend it highly. Both the restaurant, and getting together for a leisurly afternoon with a dear friend.

8 thoughts on “Cotogna

  1. I’m jealous. I don’t think that I’ve ever been to a 3 hour lunch. Your meal sounds delicious. Glad that you found something this wonderful to do with yourself during your week off.

    • Ally, it wasn’t one of those luxurious slow lunches where the food comes out over a 3 hour period…rather, we just sat and gabbed for hours after we finished. Though the service was certainly not rushed by any means. And we are courteous diners, and paid attention that the restaurant was not full, they did not need to turn our table. 🙂 I also am glad that I found something this wonderful to do with myself. It was an inspired idea indeed.

    • Simon, I thought of you and how you would be taking pictures of the dishes, and I even brought my camera, but somehow when the time came, it just didn’t happen. C’est la vie.

    • V-Grrrl, if you’ve not had gnocchi, I highly recommend it. Try it at a good italian restaurant, one known for their in house pastas. Gnocchi is made out of potatoes, not pasta, but it’s a similar skill I think. SO GOOD.

    • Where’s my ‘like’ button? Crap. Yes, Marilee is indeed great. I suspect we could have stayed and talked for two more hours, maybe 5 or 6, but it was getting late…

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