Luigi Osteria offers authentic Italian with a twist

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Julia Waldow, print editor-in-chief

An excellent alternative has surfaced to satisfy the food cravings of those of us without Italian grandmothers’ fresh, moist noodles or sweet torta della nonnas. Luigi Osteria, a trendy, semi-formal Italian restaurant on Third Street, entices customers to explore its mouth-watering menu for an authentic Italian experience.

Although the restaurant’s exterior may be black and white, the food inside is anything but colorless. The vast menu, which explodes with dynamic options and offers tantalizing selections of anything from chicken cacciatore and wild mushroom pizza to blackened salmon and roasted beet salad, is sure to satisfy any hunger craving. The restaurant’s large offering of amazing salads, seafood, pastas, pizzas and desserts verifies the statement on Luigi Osteria’s website that “one can go back again and again and find something creative and new every time.”

The restaurant’s most unique feature is its selection of small plates: small to medium sized portions perfect for an afternoon snack or sharing with friends. The baked truffle mac and cheese bathed in a liquid gold truffle sauce is the closest thing to heaven on earth, and the baked stuffed mushrooms expertly oozing with spinach, ricotta and garlic make taste buds everywhere sing “hallelujah.” With its diverse selections such as grilled polenta, chicken parmigiana, charred octopus and artichoke dip, the small plates menu has something for everyone.

After eating appetizers and main courses, customers can opt for any number of the restaurant’s homemade desserts. The banana creme bruleé, topped with a fruity, sweet crust, is worth trying, along with the savory chocolate pudding and scrumptious tiramisu.

The restaurant, which supports local and organic farming, is the latest craze to hit Third Street, and for good reason. The atmosphere is warm and inviting and the owner visits each table to say hello and speak to customers. While the menu may seem fancy, the food is not overpriced. Items vary from $4 to $15, and the quality and quantity of servings are always impeccable.

With its sizzling, savory and sweet food, Luigi Osteria is the newest rival to home cooking from the country shaped like a boot. Click here to view the menu and make a reservation. The restaurant serves dinner starting at 5:30 p.m. Bon Appetit!

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