- 6943 St Augustine Rd, Jacksonville, FL 32217
- (904) 636-9196
Garlic, freshly baked bread, oregano and piles of cheese. These are the keys to my heart. Italian food just happens to be synonomous with romance in my book. So when Emily told me to come check out her family’s restaurant, Sorrento, I was chomping at the bit to get out and sample some new marinara-drenched fare.
With all the the quarantine solitude, I was craving some time out of the house and in unfamiliar surroundings. I’ve worn out my sauce pans making Monday night home-made spaghetti. I wanted to venture out and get cozy in a booth I had never sat in before.
A free Friday night rolled around, and my husband and I put date night on the calendar. I knew just the place I wanted to go! I donned a summer dress, he put on crisp button-down and we headed into our evening plans.
About 15 minutes from our home and right down St. Augustine road, was the ivy-covered spot with black awning and the welcoming Sorrento sign.
COVID-clad in her mask and safety gloves, Emily, fabulous hostess on duty, greeted us with a smize when we walked in. (Smize, circa Top Model, is when you smil with your eyes. It especially effective when your face is covered by a mask). She escorted us through the little halls to a cozy blue booth to spend our evening in.
The layout of restaurant has a great intimate feel. It’s the kinda place with flattering ambient lighting where you want to impress your date (even if it’s your husband) with good manners and proper ettiquite. It’s the kinda place where you could bring the whole family to toast for dad’s birthday, then eat way too much pasta. I definitely got special occasions vibes there.
Would You Like to Start with an Appetizer?
In honor of a special night out, we ordered a celebratory appetizer. We’ve had our share of calamari so we browsed the menu for something different. Now we considered the roasted peppers which sounded savory but decided to go a teeny bit fancier and order the stuffed mushrooms.
I was envisioning the battered mushrooms that you dipped in horseradish sauce that were served at Houlihan’s (I worked there some years back and ate far too many stuffed shrooms). Instead, these had Italian flavors. Large mushroom buckets were filled with steaming cheese. I think there was mozzeralla and parmesan in there. These healthy-ish exotic cheese shroom boats were quite yummy.
They’re On a Roll
Emily really hooked me on the idea of visiting the restuarant by bringing my a sample of their dinner rolls with garlic butter. Their homemade dinner rolls were soft and had that fresh from the oven, ruin your appetite by eating too many kinda flavor.
Our dinner included these tasty rolls. Sorry Oprah, but I WON’T be skipping out on the bread tonite. I dunked each peice in the butter and spice tip dipping plate which came with it. Then we had their house salads complete with red onions, tomatoes, fresh greens and a creamy house-made Italian dressing. We barely had room for our entrees!
The Pasta’s & The Cheeses
For my entree, I chose the Cannelloni, a dish I’d never tried before. A bit of a risk, but it combined so many things I liked! Three cheeses, spinach, chicken and veal were all stuffed into a big tube of pasta. To me it was like a burrito of Italian cheese bliss. I choose the pink sauce, so the large pasta-rittos were swimming in a tasty pool of olive oil and creamy tomato sauce. It was quite decadent and I ended up saving half for another delicious meal to spice up my weekend.
My husband chose the Tortellini Alla Panna with the white sauce. He’s a fettucini alfredo fan so I wasn’t too suprised at his pick. The restaurant serves pretty large portions, and he was kind enough to offer me have a bite of his dinner. I ended up having two! Cheese-filled pasta circles. Yum, just yum!
We finished off our meal with some rich cheesecake with a berry drizzle. It was a bit of a struggle to get our cheesy food coma bodies out of the booth at the end of the meal. I promised myself I’d take the dogs on an extra long walk when I got home.
Another successful date night in Jacksonville. Let’s hope a celebratory event comes up soon, so we have an excuse to hit up this special occasion spot for another evening on the town.