After our last wonderful meal at La Lanterna, the boyfriend and I decided to pay them a second visit. This time, we chose to sit in their basement dining room instead of the outdoor garden. We arrived around 6:30 on a Friday night and were seated almost immediately. Their basement dining room is located just down a flight of stairs before the winter garden. There are about 10-12 tables, mostly seating two. The room is mostly lit by the candles on each table – making for a real romantic candlelit dinner. There is also a live jazz band that plays throughout the night. From certain tables, you can even see inside the kitchen as the chefs prepare the pizza!
The last time we ate at La Lanterna, we ordered the run-of-the-mill dishes that all the people on Yelp suggested. This time, we ordered based on our waitress’ recommendations. She suggested an appetizer that we normally would not have ordered – their Formaggi e Pate or cheese plate. We ordered their three-cheese combination, which comes with baked-to-order foccacia crisps. For our cheese choices, we also took our waitress’ recommendations. She suggested we try the stracchino cheese, the mozzarella di buffala, and their prosciutto crudo.
The stracchino is a cow’s milk cheese that was easy to spread over the crisps. This was my favorite cheese out of our selection because it was very soft and creamy. The mozzarella di buffala is cheese that is made from water buffalo milk. This cheese was a bit chunky and harder to spread. Their prosciutto was very thinly sliced, but a bit on the salty side.
For our main course, we went with the pesto lasagne. We were still dazzled from our last visit that we wanted to have it again. I really must comment again on how light the lasagna was. The pesto was actually still sizzling when our waitress delivered the dish our table. My favorite part of this dish is the lasagna corners, which are brown and crunchy from it’s time in the oven.
For our dessert, we chose to go with their gelato instead of their baked goods. We went with our waitress’ recommendations for the flavors – since she knew all their flavors by heart. We chose to go with the three-scoop sampler, since we wanted a variety. We chose the amaretto crunch, butter pecan and blackberry. The amaretto crunch had a hint of alcohol but it was not overbearing. The crunchy cracker in the gelato was my favorite part. The butter pecan was a close second in being my favorite. It tasted a bit bland when you first put a spoonful in your mouth but after you swallowed, it left behind a wonderful sweet aftertaste. And finally, there was the blackberry. The blackberry was sweet and tart at the same time. There was tiny bits of blackberries blended in the gelato, making the texture different from the other two gelato flavors we sampled.
Although the food was delicious and the decor was extremely romantic, the most impressing part of the night was our waitress. She was very attentive and friendly. She always made sure our water glass was full and came over every 15 minutes or so to make sure we were doing okay. Whenever we seemed to have trouble deciding what to order, she would slip in with her spot-on recommendations. If you don’t come to La Lanterna for the decor or even for the food, please come for the wonderful service. I really do recommend it. 5/5 stars as always.