Sunday, July 10, 2011

Press 626, Norfolk VA: Dreaming of Gnocchi

Press 626 Hippie Chick Sandwich
Four of enjoyed dinner at Press 626 this past Saturday. We had a nice day at the beach and were excited to have a post-sun treat. One of Press' best qualities if that they will take reservations for any size party. With the restaurant being small, this is crucial.

This past winter, Press had a Pumpkin Risotto that was phenomenal and I was excited to get there and discover what the summer vegetarian dish is. I saw Lemon Scented Gnocchi and knew I was going to have a great meal. I am not a fan of disappointment (who is!), but with food, this rises to another level. When I found out that Press was out of their Lemon Scented Gnocchi at 7:30 on a Saturday night, I was floored. What happened? The waitress said they make it right there, the actual pasta I believe she meant, and would not have more for a few hours. Saturday night. 7:30pm. Seems a little early to run out of something on the regular menu. I could almost have understood it if had been a special. Two at our table wanted that dish too - double bad.
Press 626 Panko Pork Tenderloin
After some serious grumbling by me, I settled on the Hippie Chick sandwich, subbing a portabella for the chicken, and my fellow gnocchi-wanting friend, Amandine*, went for the Petit Filet Mignon. My sandwich was a perfect mixture of sweet and salty flavors with avocado, pepperjack and jalapeno pepper jelly on sourdough. My hangup had been that I just was not in the mood for a sandwich, and Press typically only has one vegetarian entree. I need to move on. Press' fries are some of the best and we finally tried the Mac n' Cheese, which is topped with fried onions.

Press 626 Swordfish SpecialClaire* ordered the Swordfish special and Sally* the Panko Pork Tenderloin. The filet, and these two both came with Press' mashers and nicely prepared carrots. Everyone was pleased with their food and I had finally stopped growling. 
We did start with a few beverages and on that note, there is a new project in the works. Project~A4A (translation: Alcohol for Alex). My friends are convinced they can persuade me to try a new drink when we go out so that when I do want something I will refrain from ordering chilled shots of vodka. They do not give me a hangover, which is what I continue to try to explain to people. When someone does not drink often and when they do, they order vodka shots, it can seem slightly odd. Even I realize this. I agreed to Project~A4A and a Bellini was the first victim. I enjoyed it - bubbly, light and the first few sips went straight to my head. Fortunately, my sandwich prevented me from becoming too tipsy from one drink. I need to drink a Bellini when it is still very cold - once the temperature goes up, it is hard to get it down without gagging, but I am a work in progress, so it might just be me.
Press 626 Tres Leches CakeOther drinks at our table were a Mojito for Amandine and a Pomegranate Margherita for Claire. I sampled both before I ordered, but decided to order the Bellini so I could test drive three different drinks. In retrospect, I should have ordered the margherita - I enjoyed that the most, but I am glad we are onto something here with this experiment. More to come!

Two Champagne Cupcakes, a Chocolate Mousse and the Tres Leches Bread Pudding finished off the meal. All were fabulous but the bread pudding won the award, we all agreed. The piece was enormous and I took half of it home as did Sally with her cupcake. Maybe Press was trying to make up for the gnocchi incident, as this will forever be known, with the super-sized helping of bread pudding. It worked somewhat.
Press 626 Champagne CupcakesPress 626 Chocolate MousseOur server was extremely nice and apologized at least three times for the MIA gnocchi. A couple seated next to us had the gnocchi and the guy leaned over and told me how good it was. Really? Why are you gloating when we were gnocchi-less? I wanted to verbally punish him, but I just tried to hide my glare and turn back to my friends. Who does that, anyway?

The gnocchi is on my mind, so I will be back at Press, hopefully soon, before the menu changes.


Press 626
626 West Olney Road
Norfolk, VA 23507
*Make a reservation (for brunch, lunch and dinner)
Press626 Café and Wine Bar on Urbanspoon


drcorsar said...

As a vegetarian, I agree that running out of your only vegetarian entree is bad. I had a similar experience at the JewMa Hilltop (though it wasn't the only vegetarian entree) where I had psyched myself up for a homemade black bean veggie burger, and they said they had just sold the last one... at 6 pm... in a nearly empty restaurant. I almost got up and left.

Oh, and not to gloat or anything, but the lemon scented gnocchi is fantastic!!

Laine and Alex said...

You are gloating! I know you are not, but now I really need to get back to Press for the gnocchi. I'm not taking any prisoners this time.

Running out of something at 6pm is even worse than what I experienced. and lame at best. I had the same feeling of wanting to leave, but I had ordered a drink and was with good company, who also persuaded me to suppress my irritation, even if for an hour or so. The Bellini aided that effort.

Thanks for commenting:)