Serving up some of the best Italian dishes this side of Venice
If you’re in the mood for delicious, authentic Italian fare served in a romantic atmosphere where the owners and staff make guests feel as welcome as a member of the family, experience Casanova Ristorante.
Literally everything I’ve tried on the menu here has been nothing short of superb. The service is excellent – attentive and unobtrusive – the ambiance is warm and friendly and its popular cocktail lounge featuring an extensive, specially selected wine list (and full bar) has a loyal following among locals and visitors alike.
Start with the Burrata Cheese platter which combines melt-in-your-mouth burrata with thin slices of Prosciutto di Parma, sliced tomatoes, arugula, olive oil and pepper. Another popular pick is the antipasto misto made up of a selection of cured meats and complementary cheeses or the Cozze Vongole alla Siciliana which arrives as fresh mussels and clams sauteed in white wine and garlic and a spicy marinara sauce.
Popular entrees include the “Pink Lady Fettuccine” made with chicken and sundried tomatoes tossed in a creamy Alfredo sauce and the Rigatoni Mama Rosa which combines Italian sausage and mushrooms in a tomato sauce with a touch of cream.
A seafood aficionado? Options abound – ranging from the Linguini Vongole Veraci (long, flat pasta with baby Manila clams sautéed in a white wine sauce) and Farfalle al Salmone (bowtie pasta with smoked salmon tossed in a cream and tomato sauce with a touch of vodka) to the Linguini alla Pescatora (long, flat pasta with fresh fish of the day, shrimp, calamari, mussels and clams in a light tomato sauce.
Portions are generous, but if you’ve saved room for a little something sweet … try the crème brulee with its perfectly carmelized top or the homemade tiramisu, a traditional favorite.
Casanova Ristorante is located at 33585 Del Obispo St. in Dana Point (at the corner of Stonehill). For reservations, call 949.496.0992 or visit www.casanovaristorante.com