Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Trattoria Kantini, Kanda

There's a series in the New York Times at the moment called 'What You Get For...' The amount changes, but they always show you a house somewhere. At the moment there's a $300k house in San Antonio that's over 100 years old but completely remodeled. It's also close to a entertainment area, if the article is to be believed. Dad and I were just talking about how it will be nice to buy a remodeled house - glamour kitchen and bathroom especially; I'm pretty tired of my dark, cracked 'wet areas'. Don't read into that, btw - because they were remodeled on the back of cheap lending, liar loans, etc., and now with any luck you'll be able to get them for discount prices. On the other hand, I just realized that neighborhood personalities, especially entertainment areas, are going to change completely (again) over the next 10 years as a result of the economic contraction. Much as Peafowl was saying about Manayunk, the once-working-class-then-yuppie-now-dead neighborhood in West Philadelphia, the cheap money that supported them is gone, so buying a house this year or next because you like the neighborhood is an even dicier proposition.

Hell, that was a long digression. It's a good thing I type fast. My point was to say that the topic of this otherwise fairly-normal Italian lunch is "What You Get For...$10."  What do you get in Midtown? Salad, snacks, main, tiny dessert for $10? I hope so, for your sake.

Kantini was on the Tabelog map with a pretty high score; it's right next to another Italian place with a similar score, but I managed to miss that one completely because the name and signage is all Japanese. Well, next time. I really like the street that it's on. 'Kantini' made me think of 'mankini', but the service and food was nothing like that. In fact, the cheerfully-yellow 'feature wall' really brightened up the otherwise underground space, and the fact that all the customers when I arrived were female also gave me a good feeling.

The menu seemed a bit lacking; I had a toughish morning and was in the mood for a good and comforting lunch, but there were basically just pasta choices. Then I noticed that they all came with salad, 2 appetizers, bread and dessert, and I felt better. Then I got this salad and 2 appetizers and felt worse. Nice salami at least (sheesh, put that together with the mankini and we've got a themed post on our hands. Wait, did somebody say 'post'?).

Then I got the lasagna, and I felt a whole lot better. This tasted just like a lasagna should, with plenty of creamy sauce, meat, lots of veggietables throughout, and a thick coating of melted cheese.

A thick coating of bubbling melted cheese. Is this was a video, the cheese would be bubbling in an active and molten fashion. Nothing comforts me more than Italian food.

The apple pound cake wasn't anything to mention, but my lame old camera somehow managed to take a cool picture. With the narrow depth that's in focus, it's almost like a tilt-shifted picture.

If I had to describe the writing style of this blog, I'd say it was succinct, witty, laser-focused on only the most important dishes and concepts, blue, and brief, with nary a wasted word. Fortunately I don't have to describe it.

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