Guam Diner Bytes: Al Dente Ristorante
I had been craving a good steak for a while and finally was able to have it at Al Dente. I didn’t want just any steak, I wanted the Certified Angus Beef Porterhouse Steak, and I had notice that they had one on the Al Dente dinner menu. Now I do have a history with Al Dente and steaks, since I had glorified the C.A.B. Steak Promotion that then Al Dente Chef de Cuisine, Mirko Agostini, had launched years back. Mirko is now the Hyatt’s Executive Chef so my reason for coming to Al Dente again was for sentimental reasons and because I was “hungry” for a great steak!
Now for those who have yet to have dinner at Al Dente, you will soon discover that they will put something in front of you that is simply irresistible --- pizza bread! My goodness, I don’t know how to stop eating these heavenly slices of fresh baked doughy pizza slices with melted cheese on top and accompanied by a marinara/aioli dipping sauce that makes you feel like singing “dippity do da” while you munch away!
There is a soup that I must have when I eat at Al Dente. It’s their take on the Italian-American classic seafood stew, Cioppino, made with mussels, clams, shrimp, and fish, all simmered in a rich, spiced flavorful tomato broth. Did you know that Cioppino originated in San Francisco? It comes with a crostini (which kind of serves as an edible paddle). The anticipation for that great steak is building even as I enjoy my Cioppino.
The CAB Porterhouse is priced at $39.00 and comes with a choice of 3 sides (I selected grilled asparagus, semolina gnocchi, and roasted red potatoes with herbs). The steak was delivered and placed in front of me. This seemed to nearly be a sacred ritual! I was mesmerized by that beautifully grilled steak! I had ordered it Medium Rare. On my first slice through I saw that tell tale pink and red color of the juicy meat that convinced me I’d be pleased. Of course, as I started eating in my ecstatic state, I knew that this was more than just being pleased...I was being satisfied in very deep part of my soul. However they lightly seasoned the meat, it had been perfectly prepared! The service I’ve experienced at Al Dente has been exemplary. This steak didn’t need to be the biggest steak, it just had to be good enough to create a lasting memory! Now that’s a great steak indeed!
Ken “The Guam Food Guy” Stewart