Burnaby Eats: Cotto Enoteca

We wandered Cotto Enoteca a few days ago and decided to check them out for lunch. Turns out, it was their first day serving lunch!

Once seated, crusty Italian bread arrived with a Cannellini Bean & Truffle Oil spread. I was really impressed with the creamy texture of the spread and the truffle aroma is unmistakable. They also served us some oils, a parsley flavoured one and a chili infused one. I found both the flavours quite mild, and preferred the dip. The dip changes from time to time, so if you come and it’s not available, make a mental note to go back and try it. Yes, it is that good!

All Italian places are judged by their meatballs, or Polpetti. At Cotto, their version is topped with crispy bread crumbs and comes with fried pizza dough. The tangy marinara sauce made up for the mild flavour of the meatball, so add some chili flakes to the dish, it made a world of difference to me.

The pizza that caught my eye of the Pizza Carne, essentially Meat! It was aptly named and came loaded with Two Rivers guanciale, Sloping Hill pancetta, sopressata, coppa, grana padano and san marzano tomatoes. I really enjoyed the crust, because it had a great blend of crunch and chewiness. Despite having so many toppings, the pie was not soggy as some Napoletana pizzas can be. And they slice the pies for you, into 8 slices, so it’s perfect for sharing. Some other places serve the pizza whole and it’s usually too soggy to eat by hand.

I wanted to try the pastas too, so we got the half order of the Papparadelle Carbonara, with Two Rivers guanciale, parmigiano-reggiano, pecorino romano and roasted garlic. But the prize here is the 63 degree egg. It’s not a poached egg…the egg is cooked shell on, in a 63 degree water bath in an immersion circulator. It seems a shame to burst the yolk but it’s so great when you mix it into the pasta. It’s clearly more than the sum of its parts. The textures of fresh pasta with the egg is fantastic, a must-try!

Chef Alex treated us to dessert, and we asked the manager to pick one for us. A few minutes later, we had a Salted Caramel Budino in front of us. Budino is a smooth custard/pudding like dessert and this was exceptionally smooth. You could definitely taste the saltiness in the caramel. Though this dish can be made ahead, the addition of the fresh whipped cream and mint was a nice touch. And the tiny rosemary biscotti are perfect for dipping!

Good things come out of this oven, see the wood logs on the side? The pizzas don’t spend much time in here, but they turn out great – with a lightly charred crust with a bit of a chew to it.

With a fair number of seats at the bar, it’s perfect for catching some of the Olympics. Although there are quite a few Italian restaurants in the area, the vibe at Cotto is just a bit cooler and less stuffy. And the Napoletana pizzas are amazing, they are also part of the Ocean Wise program and dedicating to serving sustainable seafood. Also worth noting is the friendliness of the servers, with several people coming by to ask us how our meals were going throughout. This restaurant is a welcome addition to Burnaby.

Written By: Grace Cheung (@gracecheung604www.gracecheung604.com

Cotto Enoteca Pizzeria on Urbanspoon