Spaghetti Pomodoro – Tomatoes, Garlic, Basil, Parmigiano-Reggiano, Butter
Burrata Pie – Cherry Tomatoes DOP, A Whole Ball of Di Stefano Burrata, Fresh Basil
French Toast – Pinenut Butter, Huckleberry Jam
Guittard Chocolate Budino – Hazelnuts
Fiorella Cannoli – Ricotta, Candied Orange Peel, Chocolate, Marsala, Pistachio
Italian for “little flower” it was filling a niche that Fiorella opened its Outer Richmond flagship in early 2016, Chef Brandon Gillis bringing a pedigree including time at Franny’s in Brooklyn to The Bay Area but doing so without the pomp and pretense of others and immediately rewarded by a devout following at 2339 Clement Street.
Embracing the idea of “Neighborhood Italian” but at the same time maintaining global instincts, partnership with a local restaurateur enabling the kitchen with top-quality Ingredients and an imported wood-burning oven, it is during weekend-only Brunch that guests are encouraged to visit the Restaurant in order to avoid lengthy wait-times, though parking can often prove challenging given the residential landscape and lack of metered spaces.
Recently opening a second location on Russian Hill, though visibly doing little to stymie crowds packing both Fiorella’s comfortable interior and an outside patio, it was after perusing items and gauging hunger that five items were requested, round one consisting of housemade Noodles generously portioned and slick with Butter plus Tomato Sauce alongside Gillis’ famous Burrata Pie sporting Cherry Tomatoes smashed beneath Basil and lightly chilled Burrata that, when spread, creates an entirely unique contrast in terms of texture and temperature to the puffy Crust and heavily-blistered cornicione.
Spinning everything from Motown to Hip-hop overhead, wallpaper featuring the likes of Joe Montana and E-40 adding to the locals-only ambiance, it was for “Dessert” that Brunch’s French Toast started things off, thick slices of Brioche Custard-soaked and griddled golden beneath Pinenut Butter and Huckleberry Jam while quenelles of Budino were stick-a-spoon-up-straight thick and far more enjoyable than a Cannoli marred by its stale shell as well as an over-abundance of Citrus.