Diamond In The Rough

September 5, 2008

We have new friends!!! I love meeting new people :) Kate (a blog reader) + Nate (an over-the-shoulder blog reader) moved to Charlotte from Indianapolis two months ago and live just down the street (a big one) from us. We really enjoyed getting to know them over a fantastic dinner.

We tried a new Italian restaurant that our friends Ashley and Lucasz recommended: Tria Terra. They make almost everything in-house and it’s supposed to be an “Italian hidden gem” in Charlotte. It’s in a strip mall, so simply for atmosphere’s sake, we would have never gone here on our own, but WOW, it was fabulous!!! Once inside, the ambiance was great, and the food and service were both superb.

I started with a glass of red. The husband and I debated flavors and I decided on this cab, tempranillo, and {Italian grape} blend and it was fabulous. I could have had 2 more, but I took it easy.

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The bread basket wasn’t anything to blog about, but it was good enough for me to nibble on all night. I had about 2-3 more breadsticks and one more bite of bread. I just love bread and feel like it’s one of the main reasons I love eating in restaurants.

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I ordered an Arugula Salad with Pear, Candied Walnuts, and Creamy Gorgonzola. Fantastic and voluminous!! (Oil and vinegar on the side. I did a little dipping, but it was mostly oil on top so it was hard).

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OMG the gorgonzola was out of this world!!! It was more like brie than the crumbly blue cheese I’m used to. I want to go back just for this cheese!!!

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The husband got Salmon Tartar with asparagus, greens and avocado. I had 2 big bites :mrgreen:

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Any restaurant that gives out free food automatically gets two thumbs up from me – sorbet!!! I swear it’s there and I couldn’t for the life of me get a clear photo in the dark restaurant.

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The husband and I shared three tapas dishes for dinner (L to R):

Cod and Potato Croquettes, Stuffed Peppers with Warm Goat Cheese, and, the star dish, Vegetables Stuffed Squash and Almond sauce

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They were all in a common orange sauce, but each dish had its own flavors infused. I had one of each, plus an additional half pepper and half croquette.

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Nate + Kate got a delicious paella and were kind enough to share with us.

Paella a la Basque: Arborio rice, Spanish saffron, baby shrimps, calamari, chorizo, sausage, chicken, clams and mussels

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The husband and my bites. The chorizo was outstanding!! (I am running out of descriptor words!)

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Add 2 after-dinner mints!!

I am perfectly full after this meal, although I know I still ate “too much” when you think about calories, energy and what I would have had if I’d eaten at home. But we had a great time with our new friends, and I can’t wait to return to this place!

Tomorrow I plan on sleeping in and working out mid-morning. I just feel like taking it slowly. We have a lunch to go to, LOTS OF STUDYING, plus we might go to a festival uptown if its not raining. Busy day ahead!

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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Serena September 5, 2008 at 9:48 pm

I recently discovered that creamy brie-like blue cheese too – it is soooo good! I found it at Whole Foods, but I don’t think you have one near you?!

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2 Christie September 5, 2008 at 10:08 pm

Looks like a fun night.. enjoy your weekend!

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3 Runnershigh September 5, 2008 at 10:41 pm

This post is a reminder of how much I love your food philosophy. I aspire to one day have this outlook! Good luck studying :)

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4 madison (follow my weigh) September 6, 2008 at 1:59 am

haha wow, it really looks like the sorbet dish is empty!

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5 Ansley September 6, 2008 at 4:33 am

Candied walnuts, oh boy. Whenever I order a salad with ‘em on it, I always end up ordering a side of them, and by the end of my meal I realize I’ve eaten a dinner of walnuts ….

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6 haya September 6, 2008 at 6:51 am

neither paella nor tapas are italian, so that is kind of odd that an italian restaurant would have them on the menu.
looks tasty anyway, maybe they just need to rethink what they actually want to go for as a restaurant theme! maybe it’s really a spanish restaurant.

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7 Christie I. September 6, 2008 at 6:57 am

Wow! That dinner looks amazing. And peppers stuffed with goat cheese, oh my!

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8 Kath September 6, 2008 at 7:07 am

Haya,
You know, I didn’t even think about that! I guess the cozy feel made me think Italian. But you’re right about those being more Spanish. I re-checked the website to see:Authentic Cuisine from Italy, Spain and France. Guess it’s more of a blend?

K

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9 VeggieGirl September 6, 2008 at 7:08 am

SO lovely that you had a delectable dinner with new friends; and hooray for free sorbet!! :-)

Best of luck with your busy Saturday!

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10 ttfn300 September 6, 2008 at 7:29 am

Wow that dinner looks outta this world!

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11 Biz319 September 6, 2008 at 8:22 am

That restaurant looks amazing! Sleep in late Kath, you deserve it!

Happy Saturday!

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12 Hot Garlic September 6, 2008 at 8:54 am

Yum! I want to eat there! I do the same thing with the calorie guilt, knowing I would have been better off eating at home and that if I KNEW exactly how many I’d just eaten I would FREAK out since I feel like I am really ‘depriving’ myself right now and then to go and mess it all up in one meal! But it is so fun to go out!

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13 Little Black Dress September 7, 2008 at 8:19 pm

OMG. Your dinner looks absolutely amazing. I LOVE all your choices- especially those croquettes!

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