My sweet friend Kelly has been telling me about her favorite restaurant in Grand Rapids for a while. So, the last time I had an appointment in GR, I headed over a few hours early so I could stop for lunch. The place? Amore Trattoria Italiana.
Let me be honest with you. The place is not in a great location. As a matter of fact, from the outside, it kind of looks like a dump. Ignore that. The inside is decorated in Italian stuff. Just a ton of stuff, you know? It's not appealing to me, a lover of simplicity, but whatever. Do your thing, Amore.
I asked my waitress what she recommended for lunch and she started talking about sandwiches and lasagna. I wasn't in a sandwich mood and I do not like lasagna at all (way too much cheese), so I pretty much ignored her suggestions and got exactly what I thought I was going to get after doing preliminary research on the menu.
I started with the mista salad. It was everything I like in a salad- greens that are NOT romaine or iceberg, dressed in vinaigrette. The dressing was fantastic. It was covered in a layer of cheese, which I didn't love, but I flicked most of it off easily.
The waitress brought a bread basket. I wasn't impressed. Something in the bread was eerily reminiscent of Pizza Hut, which, try as I might to forget, it apparently a flavor profile that is going to stay with you. The bread also came with a bowl filled with dipping oil and about a metric ton of shredded cheese. Seriously, I know people love cheese, but I beg of you. Take it easy.
My entree was spaghetti with meat sauce. For the most part, I am rarely impressed with pasta. I think it's essentially foolproof and pretty difficult to screw up. In turn, it's difficult to knock my socks off.
This pasta was exceptional. I took a bite and honestly thought to myself "This is how you do al dente." There was a bite to it- the pasta was cooked perfectly. After my first few bites, I noticed something odd. The meat sauce wasn't ground beef only, it actually had pieces of chopped steak in it. Heaven.
My bill was $7.42. $7.42! Get there quick.