Friday, January 24, 2014

Serena Sicilian Influenced Cucina, Picky Eater Friendly

So, I haven't posted in quite awhile, but that certainly doesn't mean I haven't been eating! I'm working as a teacher these days and my schedule has been a little nuts.  Another contributing factor has been my super picky dining partner as of late.  My current boyfriend would just assume EAT A HOT DOG FROM A GAS STATION!!! Yes, unfortunately, you read correctly.  An unlikely pair we make indeed, what's a foodie to do?  I've been working tirelessly to expand his culinary horizons and have been met with considerable resistance, but many small victories as well.  Thanks to me Mr. Gas station "cuisine" can say he has now tasted the following items for the first time ever:

fresh raspberries
lychees (he didn't like)
mangosteen (I'm obsessed with these)
avocado (he didn't like)
honeycrisp apples (loves)
Korean barbecue
egg whites
cashew chicken
fresh sauteed green beans
brussel sprouts
chicken tortilla soup
mushroom ravioli
homemade chicken noodle soup on and so forth....

Every weekend is a battle to find a place that we are both willing to eat.  I stick my nose up at chain restaurants ( though I did take him to Outback Steakhouse for his birthday...because I'm a good person) and he breaks into hives at the mention of Indian or Thai food.  A compromise we can agree on, as with so many families with picky eaters before us, is Italian (provided it's good Italian.)

We recently visited Serena and both myself and Mr. Gagsatcurry were pleased.  The comforting Italian food was well executed and served up in good portions.

A friend of mine brought trays of Serena's eggplant rollatini to a holiday party I hosted.  Even, cooled off, the rollatini was fantastic, rivaling that of Gravy downtown.  After that tasty sampling and her Italian husband's assurance that everything he has tried there has been good, I was ready to head over with my picky man in tow.  The menu suited both of us well, he could get his comfort foods like pasta, pizza or even french fries, while I could play around with custom combinations of salads or pastas (pick the pasta, the style of sauce and an assortment of toppings from grilled octopus to Jail Island Salmon.)

Strangely we both settled on the lasagna at the recommendation of the waitress. The lasagna was made with Merquez ground steak, no ground chuck here, three cheeses and a nice tomato sauce. Mr. Bleedsfryergrease pronounced it the best lasagna he's ever had. I prefer Daniel's lasagna in Cary/Apex, but was still well pleased.  The salad and large piece of garlic flatbread that accompanied the meal were very tasty as well. I wasn't entirely blown away, but was certainly pleased enough to make plans to return. The prices are in the $10 to $20 range with the lasagna coming in around $16.  My boyfriend seemed to think this was a bit pricey, but he certainly got his money's worth since he went through two bowls of freshly grated parmesan that they good humoredly kept our table topped off with.

I do think Serena should hone in their concept a bit. Are they a gastropub? A pizzeria? A fine dining Italian Restaurant? Regardless of what they pick, the dance music they played needs to go. Otherwise, Serena is a safe bet to take a very "selective" dining companion.

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1 comment:

  1. Never had raspberries, asparagus, or sauteed green beans?!? He's lucky you've remedied that sad state of eating! :)