You probably haven’t experienced anything like this if you haven’t spent an evening at MANGIA NASHVILLE!
Nick Pellegrino and Tim Ness along with their very talented staff have created THE BIG NIGHT Nashville-Style! Every Friday and Saturday night everyone is an honorary ITALIAN at Mangia! If your family celebrates in a big way on holidays,weddings and anniversaries then you are starting to get the picture of what Mangia Nashville is all about! The never-ending family style meal of amazing classic Italian home cooking streams out of the kitchen and is passed at the tables seated with friends-those you came with and the ones you just met. By the middle of the evening, you know everyone at your table and have probably exchanged emails and become friends on Facebook—at least that how it has been for me!
Every Friday and Saturday night,Cool Cafe in Franklin,Tennessee is transformed into Mangia Nashville and creates an Italian celebration unparalleled by anything else around!
This past Sunday night was an EXTRA-special evening!
The very famous and beloved Chef Lidia Bastianich of Lidia’s Italy along with Chef Nick and his staff created the FIRST celebrity Chef event at Mangia Nashville. Lidia is well-known for her PBS cooking series,cookbooks and restaurants. Lidia and Nick collaborated on recipes for the evening and the menu featured several of Lidia’s authentic and amazing dishes! Lidia proudly supports Public Television and the evenings proceeds support Nashville Public TV.
What a privilege it was to celebrate this amazing event with Lidia and Nick! Lidia is such a sweet and gracious lady. How lucky we are that she shares the gifts of her Italian heritage with us through her amazing dishes!
Seating is always family-style.As I mentioned,if you don’t know everyone at the table when you are first seated,you definitely will by the end of the appetizer course! Libby,Layla and I had the privilege of being seated with Nick’s friends Thomas Annastas,Dennis Di Traglia and Tim Stewart. What a great group of guys! (Layla-my daughter-photographed our experience and we somehow forgot to get a picture with her in it!)
Our evening was filled with laughter,wine and celebration of food in a really big way. The experience is just like I remember at my grandmother’s table; dishes that cannot be replicated by just any restaurant. Each dish brings back unforgettable memories of childhood with my big Italian family gathered around the dinner table sharing stories and reminisicing about the “old days.” Nick and his staff prepare each dish the way you remember those home-cooked meals which brings back memories you will always cherish.
Fellow Nashville Food Blogger Charles Hunter III of www.localforkful.com shares his talents as part of the Mangia Nashville staff!
We Begin the FEAST! The ANTIPASTI is served!
Lemon Risotto Rice Cakes with Mangia Mayo;their own special blend with a touch of basil.
Fried Green Olives stuffed with fresh-made Mozzarella Cheese
One of my all-time favorites! Who wouldn’t love this!
Organic Baby Arugula Salad with house-made Lemon Balsamic Vinaigrette and Shaved Parmesan and Asparagus
Shrimp and Fava Bean Salad ~Lidia’s recipe
Wines were included for this special evening. A food-friendly Pares Balta Cabernet Sauvignon and a dry, yet fruity Rose’ from Spain.
Rice and Zucchini Casserole ~Lidia’s Recipe
Orecchiette Pasta with Bacon,Ceci Beans and Broccoli Rabe ~Lidia’s recipe
Penne Paste with Porcini Cognac Cream Sauce
Time to Dance and Sing! A break before serving the next 3 entrees and 2 desserts is filled with Italian-inspired music, dancing and singing. We were serenaded by the songs of Dean Martin,Frank Sinatra and dancing to the Mambo!
Joe Pagetta -Media Relations Manager of NPT- takes a few moments to thank Lidia for her support of NPT and Mangia Nashville.
One of my favorite things about Mangia Nashville is watching the meal preparations.Everyone is busy in the kitchen. These guys work hard to serve a magnificent feast!
Roasted Rosemary Lemon Chicken
Mangia’s Housemade Italian Sausage and Peppers~Absolutely Amazing! I cannot wait for more….
Baked Rollatini of Sole stuffed with bread crumbs,Parmesan,lemon,capers and wine
The amazing desserts: Lemon Ricotta Cheesecake
Zeppole ~ A Mangia Favorite ~ Fried Italian Doughnuts generously sprinkled with powdered sugar!
You will be able to find most of the recipes in Lidia’s cookbook Lidia’s Italy in America -My favorite!
And,check out her website www.lidiasitaly.com for these and other authentic and fabulous recipes,too!
FOR RESERVATIONS: email Nick : firstname.lastname@example.org Facebook: Mangia Nashville