Bite of Ithaca

Photo credit Mia's Restaurant

This week is the Bite of Ithaca event, happening until July 1st. Around 25 eateries throughout Ithaca, and even into Trumansburg, are participating, offering restaurant-goers “bite” sized portioned plates for $5 each. My suggestion is to take part in this event tapa style—go from one restaurant to another, ordering and splitting plates with friends so as to experience the most variety as possible.

After a self-guided architectural tour of Ithaca yesterday afternoon (with the help of a pamphlet put out by Historic Ithaca), my friend Michele and I did something of a self-guided culinary tour. The architectural tour lasted about an hour and a half (including the diversions we made) and so at its completion we were hungry! For the culinary tour, we started at Mia Restaurant. I had never been inside before, and this event gave me the opportunity to enter. It’s a cool atmosphere inside—I especially liked the Asianic art displayed and being able to sit at the tall bar situated in the middle of the restaurant. I ordered the Fried Tofu with Peanut Sauce, which came with a pickled red cabbage salad. Yummm. Michele got the seafood option. The wait for our food was a bit long, but that’s of no concern when you’re conversing with a good friend. After leaving Mia, our next plan was to stop at The Rook, as neither of us had ever been. However, it being Monday, they were closed (The Rook is open Tuesday-Saturday). So, we changed direction and went to Madeline’s, where I ordered Shiitake Arancini with Thai Basil Pesto. I was served a fried and rice-stuffed ball filled with cheese and mushroom on top of a spread of pesto and olive oil. Absolutely delicious, my favorite “bite” of the night. Michele chose the White Chocolate Semi-Freddo, a custardy desert that she pronounced was the best dessert she had ever eaten. Michele would not say that lightly, and she also let me try it; I can confirm it was excellent. Although we were pretty-well full at that point, we decided to carry on to Maxie’s Supper Club. Maxie’s was offering the option of a Mini Shellfish Platter or Two Oyster Shooters. Michele got the Mini Shellfish Platter, I opted for neither and ended up getting fries. Maxie’s was a fun place to end because the temperature had finally cooled off and we were able to comfortably eat outside on their enclosed porch. The fries I got were super hot, which I always like, but they were a little too salty for my taste, which I could have gone without. Michele seemed happy with her shellfish, though she could have gone for a little larger portion.

It was wonderful to go to three restaurants in one night—Mia’s, Madeline’s, and Maxies— all with my good, good friend Michele.

Vist for more information.


kathleen malnatiby Kathleen Malnati

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