Carol Deptolla’s Top 30 Restaurants 2014

As much as I love the braised duck ragu with pappardelle at Ristorante Bartolotta, the first thing I check out on the menu is the chef's seasonal menu by Juan Urbieta, a la carte or four courses prix fixe. In June the reward was an appetizer of vivid artichoke mousse topped with strips of crisp, fried spring vegetables and garnished with Pecorino shards and veal glaze. Downright magical.

If I can resist the pappardelle, I turn to ravioli, always tender and delicate. Spinach ravioli filled with ricotta and dressed with brown butter, truffle oil and Grana Padano is on the regular menu now, and the seasonal tomato menu lay sautéed tomatoes and wisps of black summer truffle over ricotta-filled ravioli. The wood-fired oven turns out meats such as juicy, crisp chicken, served with potato puree, brussels sprouts and white wine-lemon sauce with pan juices.

The wine list's bottles are entirely from Italy; desserts are simple but done well, like the salted caramel budino with chocolate ganache.

Ristorante Bartolotta

7616 W. State St., Wauwatosa 
(414) 771-7910

Hours: 5:30-9 p.m. Monday-Thursday; 5:30-10 p.m. Friday; 5-10 p.m. Saturday; 5-8 p.m. Sunday
Prices: Entrées, $14.95-$36.95
Payment: MasterCard, Visa, American Express, Discover, Diners Club

September 19, 2014

Chef's Menu
Half-Price Bottled Wine Every Monday and Tuesday