It was raining. Traffic was a mess. I was running late as I walked into Princi Italia to join friends from the Atlanta Food Bloggers’ Society for a private menu tasting. Maybe I should have stayed home with a PB&J. Friends, a delicious Pompei-A-Granate Martini and the gracious hospitality of Tara Johnston, our host for the night who oversees events, soon reinforced that it was well worth my efforts.
Princi Italia is located in the Atlanta Colony Square/Midtown area. It joins a street lined with restaurants capitalizing on the urban vibe that is turning Atlanta into an exciting food scene city. There is something about the design of the Princi Italia space that feels inviting and modern but not stark. Perhaps it’s the dramatic floor-to-ceiling wine wall.
Or perhaps it is the foil to the rich wood of the impressive wine wall of the simple table setting — a touch of blue glass and utensils wrapped in big, white napkin tied with string. Whatever it is, one has the impression that little and big details matter at Princi Italia.
Our tasting began with Tomato & Basil Flatbread served hot from a wood burning oven. When I think of flatbread I think of long strips of crunchy bread. At Princi Italia the flatbread is prepared as a pizza complete with presentation on a wooden pizza board. The crust was chewy and the fresh basil popped the flavor of the tomato.
One of my favorite dishes was a Burrata (cheese) Heirloom Tomato Salad. This was my first introduction to Burrata cheese and I can assure you it won’t be my last. Burrata is a step beyond Mozzarella in the processing. The cheese has a lovely rich, creaminess but my surprise was the chewy or stringing quality that added an additional depth of texture. What was extra special about this dish is the Burrata is locally sourced. Nice!
As befitting an Italian restaurant or an Italian mama, Princi Italia made sure we did not leave hungry! We had the opportunity to taste several of the restaurant’s popular entrees. We were treated to South Texas Wild Boar Gnocchi topped with shaved Reggiano cheese. Sometimes with a pasta like gnocchi the filling doesn’t stand up but this dish had flavor in every bite. I especially appreciated that since it was my first taste of wild boar.
Fettuccine di Mare with significant bites of lump crab and shrimp with a rich basil cream sauce came out next. A fall of the bone tender Braised Pork Shank was amazing.
That was followed by a Scottish Salmon with a blood orange fennel basil sauce. Blood oranges seem to be the trend at the moment and it worked well for this dish. The citrus took the fish up a notch and the red color of the fruit made for a pretty presentation.
The last entree served, Grill Chicken Pizza, was a wonderful flavor profile of pears, goat cheese and carmelized onions on a Princi Italia oven baked pizza. I could have easily eaten the dish sans chicken as a dessert. But… it was not dessert!
Princi Italia had a couple of more surprises for us before we ended our meal. Two desserts were presented to our table. The first was a lovley Lemon Curd Tart on a pistachio crust. A rasberry sauce added just the right tart-sweetness.
Last was a pefect way to end this great meal with a divalicious dessert ~ Tiramisu! Princi Italia has created a unique version of the traditional Italian dessert comprised of deadent layers of rich chocolate cake, mascarpone cream, rum, and leghorn sauce. It definately was an OMG.
In fact, kid foodie, Sage, thought it divalicious too!
To borrow a quote from one of my favorite films Sleepless In Seattle ~
What is Tiramisu?
You’ll find out.
Well what is it?
As winter turns into spring and summer I love to dine al fresco. Princi Italia has a great ‘people watching’ patio that is dog friendly. Needless to say, don’t be surprised if you find me enjoying a cocktail or two with a couple of doggie friends Sam and Beau!
Yes, as Princi Italia demonstrated, it was the attention to the detail that made our experience so special. Thanks Tara and the staff at Princi Italia for a divalicious meal.
Princi Italia Atlanta – Midtown
77 12th Street NE #6A
(at Crescent Avenue)
Atlanta, GA 30309
The meal was complementary, except for cocktails and wine, as part of a blogger influencer program affiliated with Atlanta Food Bloggers’ Society. All opinions are those of the author.
March 21, 2016
Love this post Toby! AND LOVE that you got a shot of Sage licking her plate! Ha! That is priceless! Did she know? I think it’s hysterical!
Fantastic write up on Princi Italia, you definitely captured the tasty, great atmosphere and great service personality! It’s a new favorite of mine and I hope I do see you sitting on that patio… and Sam and Beau!
March 28, 2016
Thanks Linda; appreciate your kind words. I see a a Princi Italia cocktails-on-the-patio complete with doggy friends happening soon!