>> Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Amelia's Kitchen feels like a true, neighborhood restaurant. It's been in the Teele Square Somerville neighborhood since 1995, opened by the Delio and Amelia Susi who came from the Abruzzi region of south central Italy. Their menu consists of family recipes that Amelia brought over from Italy. Amelia passed away in 1994, but her husband and son continue to serve her special family recipes.
From the moment we entered, we felt like we were visiting someone's home. The man who served us (he acted like the owner - but we were not sure), was so friendly and hospitable, we immediately felt at ease in this cozy little Italian restaurant.
The olive oil that came with the bread was a bit unusual, filled with roasted onions and mixed with balsamic vinegar.
Vine ripe tomatoes, fresh mozzarella cheese, basil drizzled with extra virgin olive oil
Caprese salad was fine - nothing particularly unique about it. I wouldn't have minded less balsamic (or maybe even no balsamic), but that may be more personal preference.
Toasted raviolis with ricotta and basil stuffing served with marinara dipping sauce
I thought the toasted raviolis were fun and pretty good. I'd never had ravioli served this way - slightly breaded and toasted until crispy. It was a nice little appetizer, and we enjoyed it, perhaps more for the novelty, but also for the taste.
House made pasta sheets layered with ground beef, mozzarella cheese, and marinara sauce
The lasagna was pretty solid, generously stuffed with ground beef, cheese, and overflowing with tomato sauce.
House made with ladyfingers, layered mascarpone cheese, and espresso
House made ricotta cheese filling in a crisp cannoli shell, topped with powdered sugar
RUSTIC APPLE GALLET
Imported open face apple pie, served hot, and topped with vanilla bean ice cream
The waiter/(owner?) convinced us to try a flight of desserts. These desserts were fine - nothing special, but not offensive either. They definitely pale in comparison to the North End.
Overall, we had a fun time at Amelia's Kitchen - more from the cozy, atmosphere and the warm and welcoming host than the food itself. Now don't get me wrong - the food's solid, homemade, and definitely beats out 90% of your typical Americanized suburban Italian restaurants. However, when matched up against our favorite North End restaurants, it's still got a ways to go.
Nevertheless, Amelia's Kitchen is a fun and intimate setting in which to enjoy a solid Italian meal. They often have promotional deals on Restaurant.com, which make a meal there a very good value. The waiter did try to get us to order a lot, so you may end up spending more than you had planned if you listen to all his suggestions.
Though I wouldn't necessarily call it a destination restaurant, it's definitely a fine place to visit if you live in the area or happen to be there for some other reason.
Somerville, MA 02144