I’ve been remiss about posting something on one of our regular haunts – Casa Vino. Run by the O’Meally brothers – Jim and Chris – Casa Vino is a great casual place for wine and nosh. This certainly isn’t a pinkies up type of place (like we would ever go to THAT) and the ambiance is clearly focused on the wine (wine barrels as tables and old wine bottles as water carafes). They have a great selection and are really good about making recommendations. One night, Chris (the wine brother) noted we liked crisp fruity wines. He recommended a Grand Cru Riesling that we have every time we come. A great thing about the wine is that they have half glasses. Perfect if you want a taste and even more perfect if you aren’t up to a whole glass of wine.
With all the focus on the wine, one might assume the food would get lost. For those of you who know us from our DC days – Scotte and Jason! – the menu is similar to Franklyn’s (one of our regular haunts when we lived in Cheverly) – a few interesting an inventive dishes with things you would see at Applebees. One standout is their house salad. They have the world’s most amazing dressing made from vinegar they make themselves. It’s light, refreshing and a bit sweet at the same time. It’s perfectly balanced.
Jim O’Meally (the food brother) also does a mean pasta. His pasta dishes are uniformly excellent and the pasta is clearly fresh and homemade. One of the best is the portobello ravioli but their/meat pasta combo are also excellent. Their chicken marsala and chicken picatta have a great flavor with a sauce that’s flavorful and light at the same time. Most entrees come with a side of roast vegetables.
Finally, you have to love the vibe of Casa Vino. It’s clearly for regulars and what we find is hilarious, is that everyone who sits at the bar has a purient interest in Chris O’Meally’s love life. Nine out of ten times we go there, someone is asking Chris if he’s dating someone. It’s hilarious and that’s exactly the type of place Casa Vino is.