When I stepped off the bus in Rhode Island a few weeks back, Aunt Cathi declared that we would do some shopping for dinner, and then visit Al Forno for a pizza and cocktails.
I'd heard of Al Forno, but had never visited before. Legendary in New England for its thin-crust pizzas and n0-reservations policy, Al Forno has been central to Providence's dining scene since the day it opened in 1980. For years I listened to people on eGullet wax eloquent about Al Forno's superlative pizza - and now, finally, here was the chance to try for myself.
Since we arrived about five minutes after the restaurant opened at 5 o'clock, Cathi and I were able to snag a table in the arbor-covered garden, where we ordered a margherita pizza and two cosmopolitans.
The cosmos arrived first. Now, as you all know, I am much more a gin girl than a vodka girl - but these cosmos really were spectactular. They were what cosmos are supposed to be. The sickly, syrupy pink cocktails you saw on Sex And The City were a poor substitute for a good cosmopolitan. A proper cosmo should put you in mind of a slightly pink gimlet (made with fresh lime juice), not a CapriSun.
These were proper cosmos.
Then came the pizza. What can I say? It was delicious. The tomato sauce was rich with deep flavor, the two kinds of cheese (mozzarella and parmesan) contrasted fresh with rich, and the shaved scallions on top lent the pizza a fresh, peppery bite that I loved.
I see what all the fuss is about, and I'll definitely be back.