FLOR DE SAL

DINE and Destinations - - SARA SAYS… -

One can­not pass by this charm­ing “cor­ner house” with its dra­matic grey ex­te­rior and land­scaped front gar­den with­out drop­ping in. This is the new restau­rant of Cristina Da Costa, a novice in the game, but un­afraid to share her per­sonal stylish ways of dé­cor and cui­sine with us, se­cure in the knowl­edge that we will love it. To bring her culi­nary dream to fruition, she has hired the best in the kitchen. Ex­ec­u­tive Chef Robert Frac­chioni was born and bred on good food in the Emilia Ro­magna area of Italy, and made a name for him­self in Ni­a­gara-on-the-lake. The mo­ment you en­ter the front door, you will rec­og­nize that you are in a ro­man­tic, lovely en­vi­ron­ment. A fire­place in ev­ery room, white table­cloths agleam with the re­flec­tion of can­dles, and fresh flow­ers every­where. For me, the wel­come sets the tone for evening. Cristina has the per­son­al­ity for hos­pi­tal­ity, and her Mediter­ranean roots are re­flected in ev­ery as­pect of the restau­rant. Din­ner be­gins with grilled sar­dines with arugula and sun-dried tomato and grilled oc­to­pus with black-eyed peas, charred cau­li­flower, lemon and ca­pers. The kitchen is metic­u­lous with its pre­sen­ta­tions, and whole grilled Branzino with an ar­ray of veg­eta­bles is in­deed a beau­ti­ful fish. Roasted Cor­nish hen with its prune stuff­ing is a treat, and if the lamb chops are on the menu, you will not go wrong. Cristina says, “My premise is taste, smell, touch and vi­su­al­iza­tion of what I will be serv­ing you, with ser­vice sec­ond to none.” And this she has done.

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