When I walked into Olio on West Main it occurred to me that I had never eaten here for a regular dinner. I attended a local food bloggers gathering quite a while ago and I enjoyed a wine dinner (at a very reasonable price). So, despite previous visits it felt like a first time experience.
We arrived very early. As we made our way to the counter to look at various offerings and peruse the menu, one of the staff warmly greeted us. As we took our time figuring out dinner options, the other staff members made sure we knew they were ready to take our order or answer any questions (they were busy preparing items for a reception and didn't want to ignore us).
The menu offered lots of sandwich options, salads, and some pizzas. Then we turned the menu over and spotted entrees available after 4 PM. Upon further deliberation I ordered the Italian Picnic ($8.49) - house-roasted turkey, granny-smith apple, fig jam, cheese with garlic aioli on baguette.
Quite delicious. The sandwich normally comes with Taleggio, but I am not a fan of this cheese (although the concept sounds yummy and I'm sure it would be a great match for other diners). Swiss was suggested as an alternative and it worked well. I liked the crunch of the apple. The turkey was plentiful and the bread had a pleasing crunchy crust. The star of the show was named Fig. The jam added the perfect sweet touch.
My hubby selected the Baked Pasta a la Vodka with Meatballs ($10.95) - penne pasta with chunky tomato sauce, four large meatballs, and parmesan and provolone cheeses melted on top. The meal came with one side dish and grilled bread. He decided on the white bean and roasted tomatoes as the accompinament.
The pasta was a generous portion with dense herb-flavored meatballs. The meatballs had been placed on top of the pasta (to allow for a vegetarian option) and baked. We wished a bit of sauce and cheese had been placed on top of the meatballs to meld the meat with the dish. No matter, still wonderfully delicious. And the white bean salad was delightful. Chopped herbs and a tad of vinegar added to large cooked white beans and tomatoes. Tasty and particularly pleasing as a side dish for summer.
Olio caters, runs a market with specialty items (likethe fig jam) and wine and beer. Wine can be enjoyed with dinner. We were able to select from any item on the wine racks. Most of the bottles we looked at ranged in the $25 - $30 range. We selected a Morgan Syrah/Grenache blend from Monterey, CA.
As we enjoyed our meal several folks came in for take out. A wine tasting was set up featuring white, red, and sparkling options. Regulars popped in to say hello.
Olio offers simple deliciousness in a comfortably casual environment.