Monday, November 18, 2013

Onlywood Restaurant, Key West

George is going back to Prague to enjoy an icy Czech winter soon so we decided to have dinner together one last time before he retreats to the frozen wastes of Central Europe. I mean you have to admire a man's eccentricity, where most people would enjoy winter in the Southernmost City, this particular one turns his back on his second home in Old Town and girds his loins for a winter even he describes as likely to be harsh. Ten degrees Fahrenheit anybody?

That or a shirt sleeve winter enjoying dinners al fresco under the cerulean winter sky particular to Key West. I will be delighted to keep the home fires burning for him.

The menu page from the website italian pizza restaurant should be legible. Basically you get appetizers, pasta pizza and meat chicken and fish dishes. If you are used to Italian American food this style may come as a surprise.

The bruschetta was my choice. I wanted to see how this proper Italian restaurant would handle this American favorite. The waiter was glad to hear me pronounce it properly, with a "k" sound, not a "ch" sound as English speakers tend to do. I did not explain my secret ancestry.

George chose a bottle red which was produced in my hidden corner of Italy, much to my surprise. Our Brands -Vitiano - Winebow, Vitiano is from Montecchio in the province of Terni. It was robust and went well with dinner. I had pesto pasta with shrimp, an odd combination I've not had before but George a fan of this restaurant, assured me it works. It did too, I woofed it.

George had a four pork pizza and he generously offered me a slice. I liked it a lot. The crust was properly thin but it wasn't dry and crisp, it retained a suppleness you'd be surprised to see in a crust so thin. It was also not greasy, which is a quality I enjoyed a lot. I am not a fan of overloaded pizza, or crust filled with melted cheese as modern chains advertise.

I ordered an American coffee to refresh me for the ride home and I got a soup tureen full. The spoon in the picture is a full sized implement...I rather suspect Americano coffee here is made with something stronger than the soft gentle coffee many Americans prefer. "Soup" (brodo) my buddy Giovanni calls it.

We sat inside as the evening was rather humid once again. Cold fronts are coming fast and thick, bringing strong winds and momentary drops in temperature but soon temperatures seem to go back up. We still await the strong front to break the back of Fall.

The interior of the place is nicely done. We ate unfashionably early but by the time we had drifted through the meal two hours later the place was filling up.

And they do actually have a real live wood burning pizza oven. It does a nice job.
A life time lived in the Czech Republic has given George a rather formal outlook. Damned if he wasn't busy making more reservations. I am rather less organized and actually reserving a table seems a highly unlikely activity in Key a West. I am going to try to be more prepared in future. Davide the owner was very accommodating.
I did finally break my silence, "Oh" he exclaimed, "you're Italian!" " You never said anything," the waiter laughed. We exchanged pleasantries and off we went,

...into the warm November night. I wish George and his family well this winter, and look forward to seeing him when he gets back. If he survives the snow.



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Anonymous said...

Always enjoy reading your blog having found it a couple of years ago. We encountered a Polish waiter here in England who complained about our weather - too mild and uniform. He liked his winters very cold and snowy and the summers very hot. A strange lot the Poles .... but a pleasant people nonetheless.

Robert Wilson said...

I enjoy your blog as well but for different reasons. I know that when I finally get back to Key West, instead of the tourist traps and other places...I will be seeking out a restaurant, a hidden ally. A hidden cove and secret spots.

The locals always know the best places for food, drinks and merriment.

Conchscooter said...

Doing my best.

Anonymous said...

Love love love your blog! Hubby is a Cop in Chicago , I daydream about him being a Southermost Cop one day.
When I read your blog all I can think about in my mind is why do we still live here?

Fred said...

Nice review of a great restaurant here on the island. We're there a few times a month. Great Italian food - reminds us of South Philly - and the staff and owners are always gracious and helpful. They just celebrated their first anniversary and we hope it's the first of many.

Conchscooter said...

My trainee in dispatch was a cop in Chicago. She and her hubby a former Chicago cop as well have relocated, and say it is excessively expensive but taxes are lower and there is less driving,so go figure...
I find onlywood is getting better with eh visit. I will review it again soon I'm sure. I want them to stay good!

George Collins said...

Many thanks for the kind words and good wishes, Michael. We've been back in cold, gray Prague for two days and have already visited our local Italian-owed trattoria three times already. We miss Key West and Onlywood but somehow we'll have to muddle through for the next few months! Cheers, George