When most people think of Italian food, they generally consider it hearty and heavy, best suited for warming up in the winter with a glass of full-bodied red wine.
If that’s all that comes to mind when you think of Italian cuisine, you’re missing out! Italians know how to celebrate the vivaciousness of spring and summer by relaxing and enjoying a bottle of cool and refreshing white wine, and tossing in some fresh garden vegetables with their entrees. The beauty of Italian eating is that it’s ideal for all seasons and diets — it only depends on your menu selection!
Choose one of these three Italian dishes, and you’ll surely feel refreshed and healthy, even in the heat of bathing-suit season:
1. Caprese Salad
Perhaps your lightest option: If you’re searching for a salad but still want to enjoy a traditional Italian dish, nothing could be more authentic than the caprese salad. Originating on the Italian island of Capri, the Caprese salad captures the spirit of Italy in both its flavor and colors. The white, red, and green of the Italian flag is represented in this dish by the freshest of mozzarella, juicy beefsteak tomatoes, and deep-green basil leaves. Traditionally, this salad is dressed with no more than a pinch of salt, a fair sprinkling of pepper, and a drizzle of olive oil, but many Americans enjoy the addition of balsamic vinegar. It’s your choice — either way will thrill your palate.
2. Rosemary Chicken
If you’re coming into Pinocchio’s famished, you can still enjoy a protein-rich meal without needing to go to sleep as soon as you get home. There’s a reason why our Rosemary Chicken is included under the “Favorites” section of our menu: Its rosemary-garlic sauce will enchant your senses and is rich enough that the chicken can be sautéed — it doesn’t need any breading to boost its flavor. Fresh asparagus adds a delightful crispness to the dish. And, if you really need more, there’s a little pasta for you on the side.
3. Archobellino Piatto
If you’ve come to an Italian restaurant because you can’t live without pasta, it’s okay! Pasta doesn’t need to be heavy. Pinocchio’s offers a number of pasta dishes that will keep you light on your feet. Among them is the Archobellino Piatto, a dish you’ll only find at Pinocchio’s! Bursting with flavor, the radiattore pasta is tossed with an abundance of vegetables — sundried tomatoes, roasted red bell peppers, and onions — as well as some chicken for protein. With so much flavor, this pasta hardly even needs a sauce. But with a little balsamic vinaigrette, the dish has an extra charm that renders it complete.
On a hot summer’s day, drop into Pinocchio’s to cool off and refresh yourself with one of these dishes that is robust in flavor yet light and energizing. Your enjoyment of our Italian fare is our top priority, so we offer a number of gluten-free items, including gluten-free pasta, to make your selection even lighter and more suitable to your dietary needs. Plus, any Italian selection will pair perfectly with a crisp Italian white wine, such as a Pinot Grigio. Remember, Italian dining isn’t about eating so many carbohydrates that you burst; it’s about filling your senses with the perfect combination of scents and flavors to complement any occasion.