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Thursday, February 21, 2008

Restaurant of the Weekend: Michaelangelo’s

Posted By on Thu, Feb 21, 2008 at 9:14 AM

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Michaelangelo's lamb chops, an electric blanket for your soul.
It’s going to be another cold one this weekend, making it a great opportunity to snuggle up in one of Cleveland’s coziest, yet most sophisticated restaurants: Michaelangelo’s, 2198 Murray Hill Road, in Little Italy. For anyone who thinks Italian cuisine is all about spaghetti and meatballs, chef-owner Michael Annandono’s rustic fare is bound to be a revelation, filled with the deep, earthy flavors typical of the Piedmont region, where Annandono studied extensively. Virtually everything is made in-house. Main courses focus on veal, lamb, and game; and for seasonings, fresh herbs, citrus, hints of white truffles, and droplets of infused oils add complexity. ... It all adds up to a sophisticated cuisine built from layer upon layer of intoxicating flavor – as far removed from the ubiquitous chicken parmigiana as a Ferrari is from a Ford. The elegantly rustic décor mirrors the food’s sophistication, with halogen track lighting and yellow-washed walls with broad white trim. As evening falls, candlelight flickers on the linen-draped tables, and those limoncello-hued walls turn into warm peach nectar. In such warm, embracing surroundings, even wind-chapped lips and a frosty nose can be easily overlooked. As for weather-appropriate sustenance, nothing beats the rich pappardelle -- broad, snappy egg noodles blanketed in a thick ragu of veal, Muscovy duck, Guinea fowl, and Barolo. Not up for a full meal? Then just settle in at the lounge -- in one of the leather club chairs, perhaps, in front of the fire, a bottle of smooth, concentrated Amarone at your side -- and soak up the season’s greatest pleasure: the certain knowledge that spring will eventually arrive. Dinner is served 5:30 to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 5:30 to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 5 to 9 p.m. on Sunday. Reservations can be made by calling 216-721-0300 or by visiting www.OpenTable.com. Read our full review of Michaelangelo's here. --- Elaine T. Cicora Read Elaine Cicora's restaurant reviews, food news, and comprehensive dining guide on the restaurant page at clevescene.com.

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