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Genoese Cuisine


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Full disclosure: Since my own kitchen was right next door for many years, I was never tempted to dine there. Misgivings started with the name. Why tag on the inaccurate "Ristorante" when "Pesto" alone is catchy enough, and more in line w current trends?

The web page says it offers Pugliese cuisine.

Look, I was just being a bit of a smartass when I first replied to Dan's query, but if you glance through the menu that Dean links, you'll see it displays some knowledge of regional Italian cuisine. There is at least one nod to Genovese food and there are orcchiette for Pugliese from Bari.

In general, there is a mish-mash of dishes from all over, including Italian-American cooking or purely American cooking. Portabello mushrooms. Shrimp, tomato and garlic with fettuccini pasta [like pannini sandwiches]. The Italian chef's background seems to be in tourist-industry spots, and thus, the notion of authenticity is as compromised as it is in Italian businesses that cater to tourists. (There was a recent glowing review of an authentic Sicilian restaurant nearby whose qualifications were questioned by mdt.)

Back in the day when I was, indeed, a participating member of egullet, I posted a topic in Busboy's old territory, asking about Italian regional dining in the D.C. area. At that time, I was very much involved in a year-and-a-half long cooking project in which we focussed on one region after another, a source of tremendous pleasure in which I learned a lot.

One thing I learned by starting that topic, though, was that the local food-obsessed crowd cared nary an iota. Even though cookbook publishers were expanding the repertoire for home cooks and accepting more manuscripts devoted to discrete regions (in the lines of Coleman Andrews on Liguria/Riviera, with LRK leading the way), most American diners seem content if they know there is a difference between Northern and Southern Italian food.

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