Cuc­ci­olo Os­te­ria

The Week (US) - - Leisure -

Durham, N.C.

Three small words on the menu—“the Ro­man way”—should have been the give­away, said Greg Cox in the Raleigh, N.C., News & Ob­server. I in­stantly fell in love with Cuc­ci­olo Os­te­ria when its lin­guine alla car­bonara made good on that prom­ise with per­fectly al dente pasta in a sauce cre­ated by pecorino ro­mano and a raw egg—no cream!— cooked by the heat of the pasta and tossed with guan­ciale and just a bit of black pep­per. So few Amer­i­can restau­rants get the de­tails right that I wasn’t ex­pect­ing such au­then­tic­ity at a spar­tan restau­rant lo­cated in a con­verted Durham ware­house, but be­neath all that ex­posed brick “beats a heart full of pas­sion for good food.” Chef Jimmy Kim, a South Korean na­tive who spent much of his youth in Switzer­land, has a deft hand with all kinds of pasta, and his porchetta—pork belly stuffed with nuts and herbs and slow-roasted—is be­witch­ing. Yes, Cuc­ci­olo, this is love: When I re­call your risotto al latte— creamy risotto cooked in milk with rosy petals of pro­sciutto scat­tered across the top—“my heart still catches.” 601 W. Main St., (984) 243-8744

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