Volume 10 Week 10

Saturday, Jan. 19


Posted May 1

Posted Jan. 9

Posted Jan. 7


Orléans Ward
Matt Luloff

Beacon Hill,
Cyrville Ward
Tim Tierney






(Posted 5 p.m., Nov. 10)
Cucina da Vito: Fine Italian dining in the heart of Orléans
By Fred Sherwin
Orléans Online

In the Oxford Dictionary the phrase “la dolce vida” is translated as “a life of heedless pleasure and luxury”. Translated literally it means “the sweet life”. Both meanings could be applied to the dining pleasure you will experience at La Cucina da Vito on St. Joseph Blvd.

Knowledgable foodies in Orléans have known about La Cucina da Vito for months. I myself have meaning to go back ever since I first had lunch at the bistro-style restaurant at a friend’s invitation in September.

Chef Vito Di Brizzi and Victor Kost are the co-owners or Cucina de Vito located on St-Joseph Blvd. next to the Jean Coutu. Fred Sherwin/Photo

On my first visit, I tried the Veal Marsala with a small Caesar on the side. Both were prepared to perfection. I am a bit of stickler when it comes to Veal Marsala and I could find no fault with what I had been served. The food and the service had lived up to its lofty reputation. But could it provide an encore worthy of the first act?

I decided to revisit Cucina da Vito with a fellow foody two weeks ago and put the place to the test. We went on a Friday night and every table was full with what seemed like an upbeat crowd engaged in various stages of the dining.

After looking over the extensive menu, we decided upon the calamari and the Gamberi alla Sambuca for our appetizers. I then ordered the Vitello alla Gorganzola, which is a veal scallopini served with a white wine cream gorganzola sauce.

My friend ordered the Carbonara which is the true measure of any Italian restaurant.

The calamari and the shrimp were out-standing – especially the calamari which was lightly dusted with semolina flour and cooked to perfection.

As for the carbonara, my discerning dining companion gave it two enthusiastic thumbs up. It wasn’t served in a sauce, which is the kiss of death when it comes to a true carbonara, and it wasn’t too dry, which is also a common faux pas.

The pièce de résistance was the Tiramisu, made in-house by chef and co-owner Vito Di Brizzi who is credited with bringing the traditional Italian dessert to Ottawa more than 30 years ago. My friend said it was like “eating a cloud”.

Besides the main menu, Chef Di Brizzi is constantly creating interesting daily specials which help make every visit to the establishment a unique dining experience.

Di Brizzi opened La Cucina with his partner Victor Kost a little over two years ago and business has been booming ever since. The two men were previously employed at the former Osteria da Luca restaurant which was located across the street.

Tired of working for someone else, they decided to open up their own place. It was a match made in culinary Heaven and Orléans diners are much better off for it. As for the prices, they are a little on the high side, but no more so than places like Giovanni’s and Vitoria Tratoria downtown, and the experience is well worth it. Plus, think of the gas you’ll save.

For more information or to make a reservation visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/CucinaDaVito/.

(This story was made possible thanks to the generous support of our local business partners.)

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