Then I walked in. I was so cold. It was so warm. I hung up my coat as they gestured me over to the window table.... beside the radiator.
The table decorations didn't hurt.
They have a prix fixe (!). Which on Thursdays includes gnocchi (which is why I was there on a Thursday, though I did have to ask - the lovely server and I had our share of communications difficulties). But it all worked out in the end, with polenta, which came as a sort of amuse:
And then, the grand finale. The best polenta* I have had in my life. Ethereal, lighter than air, topped with some version of an amtriciana. Oh my god. Make a point of eating here on a Thursday.
* Technically, they are only be tied for first, but the other contenders are no longer available. I understand that Gianni e Maria has changed owners, though feel free to give them a try. They are a little closer to home, on St. Clair W. Also, they come (came?) in a dreamy Gorgonzola sauce.