By Stefanie Gans and Rina Rapuano
Vienna | Modern American | $$$$
It couldn’t be more clear. It was at the top of the menu with a box around it. Of course, it’s what the restaurant wants guests to order. Is touting “first of the season Alba white truffles” a gimmick? Sure, truffles and its oil passed through the trend machine (on pizza, popcorn, mac and cheese) but the real imports from Italy are a special occasion. Clarity employed the fungi over a plate of radiatore pasta, little nubs resembling radiators, and it delivers on paying $27 for an appetizer portion as soon as that pungent, intoxicating scent floats through the air.
A last-of-the-summer soup is thick with peppers, corn and okra, and a little spice cuts through the creamy texture. Softened beef cheeks sink into a soupy polenta that is all the better for the beef’s drippings. Dessert feeds the chocolate monster in us all with a luxe, elegant and large-portioned plate filled with chocolate in various forms, most importantly as a huge disk of pot de creme. // 442 Maple Ave. E., Vienna