Last Saturday I spent an amazing two hours at Pacci Restorante with Chef Kiera Moritz and her staff. I love this sort of thing. Think of it as a field trip for your mind, soul and your taste buds! Pacci is located in Midtown. It is a gorgeous restaurant. Elegant, upscale, classy just choose any of these adjectives to describe it. I was so impressed when I met Chef Kiera. She is very personable, easy to talk to, witty, cute and she really knows her stuff! And she is a Georgia girl. She is a natural in front of an audience explaining each step of the recipe and adding all the do’s and don’ts to make the outcome a success. It was a fun afternoon to say the least. Here’s the three courses she prepared for us with an added dessert and drinks. It was fantastic!
Grilled Caesar Salad from Chef Kiera Moritz
One head of Romaine cleaned and cut in half
1 clove garlic, chopped finely
1/3 cup of good quality extra virgin olive oil
8 anchovy fillets, chopped
1 1/2T Worcestershire Sauce
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
freshly ground pepper, to your own taste
Juice of 1 lemon
1 coddled egg ( place egg in boiling water for 1 minute, then cooled, peeled and added in entirety)
In a large wooden salad bowl, mash the garlic with a fork or pestle.
Add chopped anchovy fillets, Worcestershire, mustard, lemon juice, and coddled egg.
Blend with garlic, mash the anchovies really well. (Chef Kiera used a fork)
Mix in the olive oil, sparingly, with a fork until it is well incorporated.
Taste it to see if you have added just the right amount of olive oil, salt, pepper and lemon, you’ll know.
It was fantastic!
Here is Chef whisking in the olive oil for the dressing.
Before we arrived the Romaine halves had been placed on the grill for a few minutes to char the edges. I’ve never tasted a Caesar Salad quite so good! Here is the Chef plating up the salads and adding fresh grated parmigiano cheese as well as croutons.
Our next course was new to me Strozzapreti: Priest Stranglers or Gnocchi. Everyone kept commenting saying it was the best they had ever had. I thought it was delicious. I loved the added walnuts and gorgonzola. I really wanted to grab the extra bowl that was left over, but this was my first time meeting some of these bloggers and I didn’t want to make that kind of first impression. I’m still regretting it, though.
Here is the gnocci ready to poach.
Now adding the gnocchi to browned butter then topping it off with sage, toasted walnuts and then a garnish of gorgonzola.
Third course was a delicious Brown Butter Pear Crespelle (Italian Crepe)
Crepes filled with pears cooked in butter with a sweetened ricotta cheese and a garnish of micro basil. Beautiful and so good!
Now to top all of this we were in for a treat outside. Even with the wind picking up it was a wonderful experience. I cannot wait until the spring when the AltoRex rooftop lounge is open. A spring or summer night overlooking the city should be an extraordinary way to spend a romantic evening in Atlanta. Check this out!
A fire pit on the rooftop just waiting for s’mores with some wonderful chocolate. Because of the wind this is the way it happened. A torch will work everytime.
They were fantastic with some hot coffee.
What a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon. A big thanks to Chef Kiera Moritz and her staff for serving us some fabulous dishes from her menu. I can’t wait to spend some time in the beautiful dining room. You should try it out, too. You will not be disappointed with the food. I can tell you that first hand. Here is a coupon to use when you visit. Just print it off and enjoy.
The Teacher Cooks
Here are links to our Pacci adventure: