June 3, 2020

Nothing Says Summer Like Seafood — Italian Style

Violino Ristorante is among Winchester's favorite Italian. But it's also a summertime seafood hotspot.

If you're thinking "Italian food in Winchester," then you're probably already thinking of Violino. They're just hands down the real deal — a local institution that everyone who's been around has a pretty well-formed opinion about. (That opinion is also probably really good. On Tripadvisor, 583 reviews place them easily as one of the top five restaurants in the area.)
But as the summer heat begins to swelter, "good seafood in Winchester" is something you might be less sure about. Nothing says summer like fresh seafood — and Violino has some of the freshest, most flavorful seafood in the Shenandoah Valley.
Two dishes on their current limited menu, in particular, are sure to knock your socks off. The Lobster Pansotti Gondoliera is a Canadian lobster ravioli in a lemon, Parmesan cream sauce, and crowned with a whole cold water lobster tail. It's absolutely as delicious and savory as it sounds. The cream sauce and cheese are rich, and the pasta is perfectly cooked — al dente, but after a few seconds it ends up nearly melting in your mouth. The lobster tail itself is wonderfully moist, flaky but not dry, and packed with succulent flavor the whole way through.
The second, Lo Scoglio, is a medley of fresh shellfish (mussels, oysters, shrimp) and calamari sautéed with garlic, tomatoes, and white wine and served over homemade pasta. It's light, refreshing, and perfect for summertime patio dining. The shellfish and pasta both have amazing texture — not overdone, not chewy, full of tremendous flavor and a little heat.
Of course, Violino offers a full assortment of great wines, antipasti, and other treats to set the stage and complement your entrée. A wonderful seasonal option is a Caesar salad prepared with buffalo mozzarella caprese and served with prosciutto. (And if you simply can't get enough seafood, the fried calamari with red and green sauces is always crowd a favorite, too!)
To book a reservation and check the latest hours, visit Violino's website. And for more information on their regular menu (and some mouthwatering pictures) click here!