Friday, March 29, 2013


3593 SE Division
Happy Hour: 5 - 6:30

Dinner. I'm calling Happy Hour at Cibo dinner. Five dollars gets you a gigantic pizza that--especially when paired with a salad--can make a full-sized dinner easily. And Happy Hour is served throughout the entire establishment so there's not much worry about not getting a table. It's a perfect set up, really...and I think that the neighborhood knows it because the place definitely filled up as we were there.

We rolled in just as Cibo was opening. They don't open their doors until five. (I'm almost surprised that they don't offer lunch. Maybe that's still to come.) They gave us our choice of tables and we quickly began perusing the menus. There were a number of unfamiliar ingredients on the drink menu and so when the server arrived we hit him with all of our questions at once. He made it through every one and was able to answer them all with ease.

The drink menu must change frequently. What is online is definitely not all that they offer in the restaurant and--at one time--our server actually mentioned that one of the cocktails was brand new. It's nice to know that they are mixing things up. And I bet if I were to already have found a favorite, they would have the ingredients on hand even if it was no longer listed on the drink menu.

I opted for the Margarita Italiano. I'm not exactly sure what makes it different from any other twist on the traditional Margarita. It was good, came with a salted rim, and went well with the snacks we had selected.

To start, the three of us shared a plate of polenta fries. It seems that I love polenta no matter how it is made. These were perfectly crisp on the outside but with that creaminess still present on the inside. The marinara that accompanied the fries was missing something. I'm not sure what, but I think it had to do with its consistency. It had good flavor--and seemed to be quite fresh--but it didn't stick as well as it should have leaving very little to enjoy on each bite. Maybe if it were just a touch thicker.

The next to arrive at the table was the pizza. It was HUGE and that's why I know that this place would make a perfect happy hour for dinner. It came with a pair of scissors instead of a typical pizza cutter. Cutting through a pizza with a pair of scissors is not something I practice often. It was comical, but very efficient. I suppose that's why they do it. The pizza was simple. Just fresh mozzarella on a tomato base and a little torn basil to top it. I loved every bite. Even the crust. I suppose I will have to go back to try some of the other pizza offerings. There's one on the menu with mushrooms, seasonal veggies, and goat cheese that sounds intriguing.

We also tried the veggie bedoni. It was my first, but I recognize the concept. It reminded me of a piroshki. Or a teeny-tiny calzone. Ours was filled with collard greens and cheese but the original is stuffed with tomatoes, anchovies, and capers.

Happy Hour done right will always make me want to come back for dinner. That's a true sign of success, in my opinion. And I want to go back for dinner. Soon. Maybe next week.

Food: Meets
Drinks: Meets
Service: Meets
Ambiance: Meets
Value: Exceeds


Cibo on Urbanspoon