TerraSole is an Italian restaurant tucked away in one of southern Connecticut’s most charming towns, Ridgefield, which is just fifteen minutes away from Danbury and the New York state border. This is one of those rare restaurants you would go out of your way to dine at, and one you could sit in for hours just so you had the opportunity to study their impressive and substantial dinner menu. What they offer their guests is more than impressive: it is down-to-earth fare with local ingredients and true flavors of Northern Italy.
I visited TerraSole on an early Monday evening with my grandma, an avid cook who is extraordinarily knowledgeable when it comes to Italian cooking (think if Lidia Bastianich and Giada De Laurentiis were to join forces). Upon arrival, we were greeted by the ever-present owner, Pietro Polini who hails from Puglia, Italy. In fact, just two weeks prior, he was back in his home country. He told us that he is always out to discover and hone in on culinary influences from Italy, spanning from Sicily up to the French and Swiss alps. His family still operates restaurants in Puglia & Rimini! At TerraSole, he creates top-notch dishes that are each a world of flavors and textures. I bet you have never experienced anything quite like this.
To start, our waiter poured us each a glass of 100% organic Primitivo di Puglia Zensa, which could best be compared to California Zinfandel, according to Polini, smooth and bold with a slightly fruity taste. It paired very well with each of our dishes. Fresh bread was served to us paired with our first course. It was freshly baked: warm and soft and paired with Polini’s very own olive oil which he sells by the bottle ($19). The olive oil at our table had gold shavings!
Our first course was their famous Burrata Caprese: imported black truffle Burrata, imported Prosciutto San Daniele aged 16 months, organic tomatoes, roasted peppers, shaved Parmigiano Reggiano, shaved black truffle & truffle balsamic drizzle. This dish is also available without prosciutto. The intricacy and detail with each dish is a real treat. It would be nearly impossible to create such a masterpiece at home, as my grandma noted. The flavors were nothing short of extravagant and vibrant.
Second hailed from their Specials menu, Polpette Di Granchio E Aragosta Con Fave: Fresh Maine Lobster & Crab cake over fresh fava bean puree topped with crispy beet and onion strings, habanero sauce. Again, like nothing either of us have every tasted before. Every aspect was cooked beautifully; an exquisite pièce de résistance on the table.
Next came the pasta. From the Specials menu was Gnocchi Di Zucca Fatti in Casa Con Gamberoni E Capesante Salsa Di Cocco: Homemade Pumpkin Gnocchi with Rock Shrimp & Bay Scallops in a Coconut sauce; and Tagliatelle Bolognese con Ricotta: Handcrafted Tagliatelle tossed with slow cooked three meat San Marzano tomato ragu topped with whipped Ricotta. We split each dish, tasting a little bit of this and a little bit of that. We had to hold ourselves back from finishing each plate. Both were easily some of the best pasta dishes I have ever tried. I continue to dream about the Tagliatelle and Gnocchi. I cannot wait to have each again!
For our main course (Specials menu), we split Costoletta Di Manzo Brasata: Braised Boneless Short Ribs with a beef glaze served with cipollini onions, parmigiano risotto cake and mixed baby vegetables. Tender and moist, the sauce was in a category of its own. The onions were a very smart pairing and you could instantly taste the local, fresh flavors. It is so apparent that the Chef goes out of their way to create such beautiful dishes. You must come in to experience TerraSole for yourself. They also create sumptuous cheese and charcuterie plates that are perfect for enjoying al fresco on their outdoor patio during the warmer months with a glass of their organic wine.
Dessert, a classic with a five gold stars: Tiramisu Con Nutella. This unforgettable dessert featured Amaretto cookie tiramisu with whipped Nutella and imported pistachio curd. Not a spoonful was left, we just couldn’t resist.
All of TerraSole’s dishes are available for takeout. For takeout, take 20% off any order! A really great deal. TerraSole is open seven days a week for All of our dishes for brunch, lunch and dinner from 11:30 a.m. to close. This is a perfect dining spot pre or post a concert at The Ridgefield Playhouse.
On November 3rd at 7pm in partnership with 109 Wine Shop and Kobrand W&S, TerraSole will present An Evening in Italy which features a special five course wine pairing dinner. Please call ahead to reserve.
http://terrasoleridgefield.com // 203-438-5352