The first of three nice dinners we had during our week in Avalon was at Sorella Rose on 8th Street, within walking distance of where we stayed.
This was our second visit to this restaurant as we had a very nice dinner with a group of friends back in early January of this year. Not many of the better shore restaurants remain open during the winter months so it is a blessing that Sorella Rose serves dinner on Fridays and Saturdays throughout the cold months.
Our guests for the week were our friends JoAnn, who has been my wife’s best friend since childhood, and her husband Gerry who has been my friend for almost as long. After being seated and opening a white wine for starters (2005 St Urban-Hof Ockfener Bockstein Riesling Spatlese) we perused the extensive and inviting menu. On our January visit they were serving a lobster bisque which was absolutely delicious but it wasn’t on the menu this evening so I chose the Spicy Crab Soup. There were ample chunks of crab and the soup was good but it still finished a distant second to the lobster bisque. The Spatlese having been depleted we now opened two bottles of Shirvington Shiraz, an Australian fruit bomb. We had both the 2004 and 2005 and it was interesting that they could have easily been two completely unrelated wines as the taste of each were much different. JoAnn and I both preferred the 2004 which was more complex and sort of hit you in the face with it’s bold flavors. The 2005 had more subtlety and was probably a beter companion to my entree which was the Crab Sorella.
JoAnn opted for the Shrimp Sorella, Gerry went with the Jersey Kettle (shrimp, scallops, little neck clams and Brazilian lobster meat in an aromatic fennel tomato broth served over linguini) and Kathy chose the Veal Napolean (pan seared veal medallions layered with eggplant, prosciutta, spinach and fresh mozzarella). Kathy usually loves anything with the word eggplant in it but found her dish to be a bit bland with both the veal and eggplant lacking real flavor.