No. 87, Polenta Board at CUCINA Enoteca
Anne Marie Panoringan

No. 87, Polenta Board at CUCINA Enoteca

A memorable meal can be layered in flavor or simple in taste. In the case of our polenta board, it leans towards the latter. The fewer the components, the more a kitchen focuses on precise execution. Call it the In-N-Out school of thought: When an item is made well, it need not be fussy nor possess a ticker tape ingredient list.

An Italian stallion at the El Toro Y, CUCINA is a departure from stereotypical spaghetti cafes. Housing dual patios plus a convenient onsite wine shop, they coax you to linger. The San Diego-based chain entices patrons via artsy fixtures and a relatively progressive menu with selections not easily accessible in the immediate area.

Reminiscent of the way dessert souffles are oft presented, servers flourish in their tableside plating of this specialty entree. A

Greek paddle

wooden board is your serveware, graciously coated with rich polenta. The protein du jour is close behind (our Sunday special was wild boar). Feeding at that carnal craving for meat and starch, the duo of riches beckons for consumption.

Forking around isn't restricted, but encouraged. Patrons scrape the mixture onto small plates, proving they still possess a modicum of dignity, right before greedily chowing down on their meal. Savory with a hint of sweetness, we briefly entertain the thought of boar polenta body cream. It is that intoxicating.

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Click here to view our 100 Favorite Dishes of 2010!
Click here to view our 100 Favorite Dishes of 2011!

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