Monday, June 30, 2008

Wiseguys & Paisans


First off, let me apologize to any Italian-American readers for the stereotype, but Accurso's at 5044 Main in Kansas City is so Italian authentic that it's not a stretch to imagine the John Gottis and Lucky Luccianos of the world stopping by for a quick bite on the way to a "business meeting". From the red-and-white checkered tablecloths, to the family portraits covering the walls, to the Frank and Deano playing on the stereo, if you were designing an Italian restaurant for a gangster flick, you couldn't do any better than Accurso's.

But it's not just the atmosphere that makes this place special. The food is fantastic as well. With a menu offering all the southern Italian favorites you expect at such a place, it's hard to make a decision. Finally, after considerable thought, I chose the Shrimp Penne Diavlo, and Natasha had the Chicken Modiga. Both came with Accurso's house salad, which was good, just as expected, and their (I'm assuming) home-made garlic bread. My penne was fantastic, just the right touch of heat that you want in diavlo sauce, and plenty of cheese. Now I'll admit it, I'm not a huge fan of Italian food, but this was the best I've ever had. Yeah, I said it, the best, including places on the Hill in St. Louis. Zia's is good, but I'll take Accurso's over it any day.

Natasha echoed my sentiments. Her Chicken Modiga consisted of char grilled chicken with mozzarella and portabellos in a lemon-chicken stock-wine sauce. Served with a side of spaghetti, it was excellent. The side of spaghetti was something else too. Normally I detest plain tomato sauce (or gravy as purists may call it), as boring and bland. Accurso's is different. Their red sauce is bursting with flavor, equally at home I'm sure on linguine or a pizza. Top notch stuff, really...

The prices were what you would expect for an Italian place, between $14-17 for most entrees, but the portions were huge. We each had two meals from our left-overs, so the price really is fairly cheap when you consider that.

Service was excellent, not only was our waitress, fresh back from Italy, extremely nice and attentive, but the manager also checked in on us and made sure everything was satisfactory.

In fact, the only downside of the entire meal, was the air conditioning was too high for Natasha who was cold in a sleeveless shirt. Overall, however, fantastic. We'll definitely be back.

    Food: 5
    Atmosphere: 4.75
    Service: 5
    Menu: 4
    Price: 4
    Total: 22.7
    Average: 4.55

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