I was lucky enough to be invited recently to try out Brio Tuscan Grille's new "Moderno" Menu. I've dined at this restaurant once before, but after hearing about the new tasty dishes I couldn't wait to taste the new offerings. This new menu showcases a new take on Tuscan-style dining and incorporates small plates and entrees perfect for sharing.
The restaurant itself is nicely decorated and feels like a great places to eat with a large group or family. They have lots of variety on the menu, so there's something for everyone! Their pastas are made in house, which is something that I love! I'm always craving that pasta with the perfect texture and bite.
We decided to start with the Brûléed Parmesan Cream for an appetizer. It was a really unique and interesting dish that I've never had anywhere else before. I love cheese, and am a huge fan of salty and sweet flavors together, so this was a treat. It was a salty cheese flavored cream with a sugar bruleed top that you could crack into just like a cream brulee! It was served with the perfect grilled chiabata bread. I seriously couldn't stop eating this! There was also some balsamic roasted grapes served with it that gave that additional sweet flavor. I couldn't decide if I liked the grapes or not.
Next, for the entree, I knew I wanted the side of the roasted tomato basil fettuccine. I can never pass up handmade pasta! For the main entree, I ordered the Espresso Rubbed Ribeye. This was a 16 oz bone-in pieces of meat, so it's definitely perfect for sharing with another person. The steak was perfectly cooked to medium rare and had really good flavor. The espresso flavor was really unique and complimented the meat without overpowering it.
The roasted tomato basil pasta side was tasty and you could really taste the basil in the tomato sauce, which I love. I can never get enough basil in my pasta. My only complaint was that this dish was a bit oily. The oils really separated itself from the sauce.
|Espresso Rubbed Ribeye|
When it came time for dessert, instead of bringing a dessert menu, they brough over a display of the dessert options to choose from. I thought this was great idea, because a lot of times, people eat with their eyes and want to see what they'll be getting. I opted for the Chocolate Cake, because chocolate. :)
This was actually the dish I would skip. I didn't really enjoy the texture of the final cake that was brought out. It was actually really liquidy still inside and almost seemed like it was under-cooked. I was expecting a bit more cake texture with a molten center, than the 80% liquid 20% cake shell I got. The ice cream was also pretty melted by the time it came out to me, so there was that.
Overall, the service was pretty good at Brio and I think it's a place worth trying with a diverse group say your family or coworkers because of the variety. The new "moderna" menu had some unique dishes, but overall, I think they could have done even more modern. A lot of the menu still seemed pretty traditional and old school, which isn't really my preference of type of food.
The Brio Tuscan Grille I went to is located at the Irvine Spectrum Center.774 Sprectrum Center Dr.
Irvine, CA 92618
For a list of locations, visit www.BrioItalian.com.
Did you check out the Hello Kitty Cafe recap also located at the Irvine Spectrum?