– Jennifer Wood, Mix 96.1/Sacramento
I am crazy for cookbooks. I read them like novels. At last count, I have 600+… and that was 3 years ago. If I can find just ONE recipe in a book that turns me on, I am thrilled.
Which brings me to Trio: Restaurant – Bakery – Market
Dale and I went to Trio this past weekend for my Wednesday “Wine and Dine” blog and picked up the owner’s own cookbook, “Vanilla Bean Bistro.” The bistro is another of Gonul Blum’s restaurants in Sacramento. What a GREAT book!
Blum grew up in Turkey, and the region influences her dishes, many of which are featured in the book. She is right in my wheelhouse, as she also uses fresh herbs from her own garden for the dishes she prepares at Trio.
We sat at a comfy table near the window looking directly out onto “J” Street and were immediately given soft, warm pita and a lentil dip as a free starter.
As we sipped our beer, Lagunitis IPA for Dale, Hoegaarden Wheat for me, we decided upon an appetizer of fried butternut squash ravioli with Dijon mustard cream sauce, pecorino gran cru, goat cheese and mascarpone cheese. Sounded GREAT! What came to the table was actually the entrée ravioli with bay leaf, sage, cream, shallots, pecorino gran cru, goat cheese and provolone. Good, but not what we had asked for.
We also ordered a starter of Turkish meatballs made with ground beef and lamb with herbs (from her garden) served with seasonal vegetables, rice & fresh pita.
For mains, Dale got the cioppino, which came loaded with fish, mussels, clams,shrimp, squid, fish stock, tomato, fennel and MORE herbs. It came topped with a garlic crostini for dunking.
I chose the lamb shank with butternut squash risotto and seasonal vegetables and a Serrano vinegar sauce. The risotto arrived at the table under the shank luke warm, but they immediately fixed that. The lamb was sweet and slightly tart from the vinegar. If you like that sticky-finger kind of fat, you will be very pleased. This will be a great dish for our cool, foggy and wet evenings.
There is a small market on your way into the restaurant. Look for Blum’s cookbook (along with dried herbs, sauces, jams and specialty items) and check out her simple, de-lish recipes. It’s a great addition to any cooking library, especially if you want to give Turkish food a try.