*Ristorante Civello is closed at this time.*
To the great Italian restaurants in New Orleans, add a new one--Ristorante Civello in uptown New Orleans.
Ristorante Civello is located at 5831 Magazine Street near State Street. It's decor is beautifully romantic, and I especially love the ceiling painted to resemble an evening sky. The lighting is soft, and the decor is elegant, but not pretentious. The pink glow given off by the ambient lighting makes us all look good. Chef Paul Gilberti is the resident artist, and often strolls through the dining room to make sure you are enjoying your dinner.
For the traditional minded, the menu contains some dishes you might expect, such as calamari and minestrone. The Shrimp Soprano (fried eggplant topped with shrimp and gorgonzpola sauce) was wonderful, as was the Pompano Gilberti, topped with jumbo lump crabmeat and sauce piccata. Others enjoyed the Veal Osso Bucco with gorgonzola polenta, Tournedos Rosario with potato frittata, and the Veal Saltimbocca. At the waiter's suggestion, we all shared a plate of Fussili Alfredo on the side.
Dessert and Wine:
For dessert I had ice cream drizzled with chocolate sauce and fresh berries. One of my friends had a rich chocolate cake with mocha ice cream. Talk about La Dolce Vita! The wine list is very good, with mostly Italian (of course) choices, but also with some French and California vintages.
Maitre D Kevin Rouchell entertains the diners with the most beautiful operatic selections, along with the occasional Italian love song. When we were there, his performance of the "Toredor Song" was as delightful as his "Nessun Dorma" was stiring.