gltsoi (gltsoi) wrote,

Real Gusto, Medford

As unlikely as it seems, owners Matteo and Francesca Ronzio were visiting Boston from Italy, fell in love with the city and decided to move here, opening a restaurant & grocery. It's like the bizarro version of Under the Tuscan Sun.

The restaurant just opened on November 8th and it is located in Medford Square, in what used to be a book store. The space is sparse and bland. The beige walls and white décor feels more like a real estate office than a restaurant. We had a super early dinner (5:30pm on Saturday) and the dining room was 1/3 full with couples and their small kids. It feels like a nice neighborhood place.

A specially imported from Italy oven dominates the open pizza making area. We ordered a simple margherita pizza ($13), well done. The crust was thin and had good flavor and texture; however the tomato sauce was watery, causing the middle of the pie to be a soupy mess. All the pizzas are 12", which is small for the price. The single wilted basil leaf was just sad.

The mushroom risotto was excellent ($20). The rice was perfectly cooked and it was chock full of tender, flavorful porcini mushrooms. There was a weird glob/swipe of red wine sauce that was oddly saccharin and had over reduced, so it was thick and syrupy. There was no reason for it to be there.

It is hard for me to resist eggplant parm. The appetizer portion was small for $12. It was done in the Sicilian style, where the rounds of eggplant are not breaded. It may be more authentic, but I really prefer it with breading. Steve was not a fan and barely had more than a bite.

The bread basket had rounds of a dense, crusty baguette and it was served with a fruity olive oil that you can buy at the front of the store. Our server was friendly and competent. They are still working on a liquor license, and there is no BYOB in the meantime.

We wanted to like it more than we actually did. Steve summed it up aptly with, "It's fine, but Nappi is better,"

They don't have a real website, so here it their facebook page:
Tags: italian, medford, restaurant review
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