Aragosta Bar + Bistro, Fairmont Battery Wharf

Last Wednesday, Boston finally got some gorgeous, warm weather, and it was the perfect night to sit out on the terrace at Aragosta Bar + Bistro, one of Boston's newest waterfront dining spots. Aragosta features contemporary Italian cuisine, including hand-made pastas, and uses New England seafood and local ingredients. I was so excited to check it out during Aragosta's complimentary blogger party.

Photo courtesy of Tiny Urban Kitchen. Thanks, Jen!
Michelle, Daisy, me, Athena, Jen

After a seemingly never-ending eight hours at work, I met Daisy in the North End, and we strolled over to Fairmont Battery Wharf together in the warm sunshine. We arrived at Aragosta to find Meghan, Michelle and her fiance, Elizabeth, and Rachel already lounging on the comfy couches with super-plush pillows and sipping cocktails.

Michelle explained the two cocktails to us, and without wasting any time, Daisy and I joined our friends on the couches and selected our drinks. The two choices were the Moscow Mule and the Yellow Pepper Limoncello Sour. I opted to try the Moscow Mule, a mixture of Grey Goose vodka, fresh ginger, lime juice, and club soda, first.

The fresh ginger taste was noticeable, and I absolutely loved this drink. It is the perfect patio beverage. I later tried the Yellow Pepper Limoncello Sour, which was also good, but I preferred the Moscow Mule. The Limoncello drink really does taste like yellow peppers, so if that's a flavor you like, I definitely recommend trying the refreshing cocktail.

On a nearby table was a spread of bread, hot cherry peppers, and a hand-crafted selection of salumi and caponata. (We soon realized this table was the hotspot of the night as waiters and waitresses would continuously pop out of the restaurant and place something new there.)

Hand Crafted Selection of Salumi, Caponata, Hot Cherry Peppers, Crusty Bread

I nibbled on bread and prosciutto and caught up with old friends as well as made new ones. Lindsey and Jon from Beantown EatsChe from Knight at the Restaurant, and Angela from Cloud of Chaos were among the new bloggers I met during the event.

The interior of the bread was soft and light, and the outside was audibly crunchy. It was perfect with a little olive oil. And of course, one can't ever really go wrong with salty prosciutto.

One of what I have no hesitations calling the best items of the night came out next: duckfat truffle fries.

These were hot and crispy with just the right amount of salt and served with aioli on the side. I could have polished off a whole cone by myself. (I'm sure everyone else was happy I shared though.) These fries are enough to get me back to Aragosta again.

As we happily snacked on fries, food just kept constantly appearing, and every time something new came out, like the good bloggers that we are, we all jumped up and took pictures and then brought plates of whatever was presented back to our tables to enjoy.

Lobster & Truffle Crostini, White Bean Puree
If I just had this and the fries, I would have left perfectly content. I wouldn't have thought to pair a lightly dressed, chunky lobster salad with a white bean puree, but it just works. And of course, the truffle flavor is an added bonus to this dish.

Sautéed Calamari Salad, Baby Arugula, San Marzano Tomato, Balsamic
I rarely eat calamari in a form other than fried, so I found this preparation very interesting and obviously lighter. The vibrant San Marzano tomatoes seemed to bring the whole dish together for me.

Braised Veal & Pancetta Meatballs, Soft Polenta, Arugula
Another stellar dish, the veal and pancetta meatball quickly won me over, even though I had no idea what kind of meat it consisted of when I tried it. Bites of the firm meatball paired well in flavor and texture with the soft, creamy polenta.

Lobster Bisque
I was a little disappointed to see that the lobster bisque didn't have any chunks of lobster in it, but what it lacks in chunky texture, it more than makes up for in flavor. The smooth bisque is almost a little sweet and pleasantly "lobster-y."

Truffle Rigatoni, Warm Goat Cheese Fondue
I know I shouldn't say this, but I almost think the truffle rigatoni is a little too cheesy. It teeters right on the edge with its incredible goat cheese fondue. I love cheese and appreciated a few small bites of the rigatoni, but I doubt I could make it through an entire entree portion.

At this point we took a brief breather, and Meghan, Daisy, and I all ordered the Settanta Cinque, described as an Italian version of a French 75 (one of my favorite cocktails) and consisting of Aperol, lemon juice, and prosecco.

This was another refreshing beverage perfect for a warm evening. It's not overly sweet because of the Aperol and is nicely balanced with the lemon juice and prosecco. As we sipped our cocktails, we continued to eat...

Pappardelle Bolognese, Veal Cheek & Ox Tail Ragu, Porcini Powder
I think I can bestow favorite dish honors on this pappardelle bolognese. I love wide, flat pasta noodles, so this hand-made pasta was just perfect for me and the ragu was so tender, and if you can't tell, there's a little chunk of brie in that bowl too. I look forward to heading back to order the entree version of this. I've already been raving about it to Jeff too because I know he would love it as well.

Orecchiette, Broccoli Rabe, Pancetta, Capers, Preserved Lemon
The orecchiette was another great pasta dish with lots of fantastic salty, briny flavor plus bright acidity from the preserved lemon.

Gnocchi, Slow Cooked Lamb Shoulder, Rosemary Citrus Jus, Asparagus
Perfect pillowy gnocchi -- that's about all that needs to be said about this dish. If you love gnocchi, it's a must-try.

We also had lobster ravioli with roasted cauliflower, but I somehow missed a photo op for that dish. It was as amazing as the rest of the pasta dishes.

Seared Tuna, Roasted Fennel, Marcona Almonds, Golden Raisin Puree
The seared tuna took us away from pasta dishes and back into lighter territory. I thought the Marcona almonds were an interesting pairing and loved the crunchy texture with the soft tuna.

PT Farms Pork Chop, Fontina, Pancetta, Algre Dolce Peppers
While the pork and Fontina was an interesting dish and I really liked the pork, the Fontina was a little strong for my liking.

Many of the dishes above are actually served as entrees, so we just got small samples to try, but if you head to Aragosta, you'll be getting a full-size portion. (I don't want anyone looking at the menu and thinking the lamb and gnocchi looks awfully tiny for $22.)

And finally, the parade of dishes dwindled down, and we all realized we were happily full. We decided to switch to prosecco toward the end of the evening, just in time for dessert.

Photo courtesy of Fun and Fearless in Beantown. Thanks, Michelle!
Michelle, Meghan, Daisy, and me
Chef David Daniels brought out dessert, and we got to chat with him for a few minutes about the restaurant, the food, and his culinary inspiration: his mother.

Mascarpone Ice Cream With A Muscat Pie
The dessert was very interesting, and we all kept trying to figure out the flavor of the ice cream. We found it familiar but couldn't place it, and suddenly it made sense when we found out it was mascarpone ice cream.

I'll leave you with just one last picture: the gorgeous view from Aragosta's back patio. I already can't wait to go back.

Thank you so much to Chef Daniels for the fabulous food, to Suzanne Wenz for putting together such a great event, to all the wait staff for putting up with all of our picture taking and for graciously explaining each dish to us, and to Daisy -- who invited me to be her plus-one.

What is your favorite spot for outdoor dining?

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