Thursday, July 25, 2013


When the Aquitaine Group said they were opening a new restaurant in the South End I was excited, having had good experiences at their other establishments, like Union Bar and Grille.  When I found out that Cinquecento was going to be an Italian restaurant, I was curious to see what it was all about. After giving them some time to sort out the kinks, Nick and I headed over to check out the new space. With an impressive brick entryway that leads to the front door, I walked up the stairs where I was greeted by the hostess. I beat Nick there, so I decided to grab our table and look over the menu. When Nick arrived, we decided on a couple of cocktails.

Gregorio - Lanazul Tequila, Blood Orange and Kaffir Lime
Rhubarbella - Rhubarb, Vodka, Fresh Lime and house made Verbeena Cordial

The cocktail list definitely had some creative and delicious looking recipes, and we definitely enjoyed these. While sipping on our drinks, we enjoyed some Italian bread dipped in olive oil.

Bread and Olive Oil
Not realizing bread was on the way, we had already put in for an order of the Ricotta Fresca, which came with its own grilled bread.  The ricotta was so fresh and delicious, I totally enjoyed every bite of it.  I don't think there was any ricotta left on this plate.

Ricotta Fresca
The other appetizer we ordered was the Carpaccio Cabonizatti: charred beef carpaccio, hazelnuts and (more!) grilled bread. The beef was tasty and the arugula on top offered a nice peppery taste that went well in each bite. The hazelnuts added a crunch and texture that made the dish more exciting.

For main dishes, Nick and I both went with pasta.  I never used to order pasta out, but more and more often it is something I lean towards, especially when the ingredients are something I don't necessarily have at my fingertips (or grocery store!).

Gnocchi Al Sugo Di Coniglio - Braised rabbit, castelventrano olives, lemon & parmigiano reggiano
Spaghetti Al Gamberi - Gulf Shrimp, Guanciale, Ramps, Chilis and Lemon
Both of these dishes were delicious.  I have heard there were salt issues from other diners, but that was not the case on the night we were there.  Nick really liked his dish, but found a bunch of small bones in the rabbit.  I'm not sure if this is just the nature of that type of protein or not.  For about $16.50, each of these dishes was a decent portion size considering the fish or the rare meat included in each.

In an effort to try every part of this menu, we sat for a bit and sipped on coffee and reviewed the dessert menu.

Frothy Cappuccino
For desserts Nick went with the Affogato - vanilla gelato with a shot of espresso poured over top. I must admit, I had dessert envy.  This dessert is so easy, but with quality ingredients (strong espresso and great gelato) it really is the perfect way to end a meal.

I went with the Zucchini Cake with some gelato, which was OK.  I was just jealous of Nick's dessert!

Zucchini Cake
Overall, we enjoyed ourselves at Cinquecento. I definitely would head back for drinks and appetizers as those were the best parts of the meal.  The ingredients in the pasta dishes offered something different which I enjoyed.  Obviously, if you get dessert, go for the affogato!

Cinquecento on Urbanspoon


  1. Oh my goodness. Everything looks great! That fresh ricotta! Yum! I still need to make my way over there.

  2. oh wow, that ricotta has me drooling!! also loving the creative cocktails :)

  3. I still haven't been there, but I'll definitely get the affogato!

  4. The grilled bread and ricotta looks sooo good! And the rhubarb cocktail is very intriguing!

  5. I love Cinquecento! My favorite is the kale salad in winter.


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