We had yet another amazing dinner last night at Monsú.
I am telling you, these people know what's up.
As with all of his restaurants, the people at Monsú cater amazingly to gluten allergies. Several of the Chef's children have Celiac, and so he, and all of his employees, understand the importance of creating delicious gf dishes. And they know that it all starts with the bread.
Tote, the new gluten free bakery, provides the baguette (which is quite tasty as is- see post below for details) and the phenomenal kitchen staff does the rest. A house-made whipped ricotta with honey and orange, drizzled with olive oil and cracked with tasty grains of sea salt and black pepper arrives at the table in the most unassuming little white dish. It looks so innocent, just sitting there in the middle of the table like "Oh hey guys, what's up? Welcome to Monsú. You should probably dunk a little warm piece of bread in me and see how that tastes." Brilliant. That's how.
My entree was a gluten-free pasta tossed with sweet onions, pancetta, and juicy, plump Roma tomatoes, and black pepper, with shaved Parmesan cooked so perfectly that I would have sworn someones Italian grandmother was back in the kitchen slaving over a hot stove.
For dessert, a strawberry and goat cheese panna cotta drizzled with a balsamic sauce so perfectly aged that it had become a syrup, delicately balancing the fluffy pink custard.
But the best part about Monsú is the incredible staff. Like all of McAndrews' restaurants, they are extremely nice and helpful and go above and beyond to make you feel at home. I know this is odd for someone who writes a blog about being gluten-free and proud, but I still get uncomfortable when I have to make a big deal about it at a restaurant. I feel bad because I know I'm that annoying person at the table with the food handicap (thanks, Ben Fileccia). I hate having the spotlight on me- having to explain what it is and ask "Can I have this? How about that?" At both Modo Mio and Monsú, they take care of everything, from the bread service to dessert- you only have to tell them once. I continue to go there because they make me feel, well, normal. And normal is amazing. It is possibly the most wonderful bit of hospitality I have ever experienced.
901 Christian Street
Philadelphia PA 19147