Thursday, October 22, 2009


1430 H street NW (between 14th street & 15th street), washington, DC 20005
tel: 202) 638-4444
hours: monday-thursday 11:30am-10pm, friday-saturday 11:30am-11pm, sunday brunch 10am-3pm, sunday dinner 3pm-10pm
what was consumed: arancini alla salsiccia di cinghiale (fried risotto balls stuffed with wild boar sausage and provolone), gnocchi al pesto (pesto sauce, toasted walnuts), funghi pizza (portabello, oyster and domestic mushrooms, tomato sauce, mozzarella and parmesan)
ah, potenza.
i kept seeing potenza on a number of different lists and places. what was it being written up for? i don't remember. no matter - when friend wanted to go to dinner and suggested potenza, i was all about it.
we met at the restaurant on a pretty quiet weekday evening. on the map, potenza didn't seem too far away from work, so i decided to take a nice leisurely walk to its location. of course, as i often do, i neglected a few things - the humid summers (even though it wasn't too humid, it was still warm and it was still summer ... and i'm super adverse to heat and humidity!), the DC blocks that looked so short and doable on the map but seemed so very long when i was walking, and my heavy, heavy, HEAVY bag. i was glad to make it to the restaurant - it couldn't have be soon enough! i will take the bus (or some sort of transportation) next time.
anyway, we made reservations, though it wasn't really necessary in that they had quite a large dining area and not too many patrons, which we wondered about (too bad!).
we started our meal with a nice appetizer of fried risotto balls. delicious! friend claims that the lavender overpowered the dish a bit. i thought it was delicious (so there!). we then proceeded to our entrees. friend ordered the mushroom pizza (using laymen's terms). delicious! the crust was thin, but not too thin, and its flavor was delicious. on top of that, the combination of cheeses with the different kinds of mushrooms made the pizza delectable. there are a number of other pizzas that, i think, are worthy of future exploration. i, on the other hand, could not resist my pasta loves and ordered the gnocci. and i'm glad i did! the soft gnocci came in a delicious pesto, topped with cheese. really? really? so so so delicious. everyone has an indicator of what makes a good restaurant (e.g. some people will try the pad thai at a new thai restaurant to see how that thai restaurant rates) - mine is gnocci at italian restaurants. now, i can't say that i'm an expert when it comes to food (outside of me totally loving food) nor can i say that i'm an expert when it comes to gnocci. however, i do know what i like, and potenza (as far as i'm concerned) did a great job! good food coupled with good wine (i had a nice rose - it was still summer); i couldn't get enough.
note: potenza makes all of their pastas and breads in-house. turns out, they have their own bakery (of sorts). in fact, you can go to their bakery and purchase goods (predominantly bread and pasta, i imagine) for your consumption outside of the restaurant.
a great wine list and a great menu! i'm glad to have visited potenza and look forward to seeing what else is on the menu. friends, let's do this again!

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