It makes sense…add a little Italian to Parkdale. They already have tacos, lobsters and ssam. Why not some capocolla too? Even better, make it tapas. Porzia has recently opened in the proximity of Grand Electric and Chantecler and promises edgy food in a edgy environment. Most of the menu focuses on aggressive uses of chicken liver, tripe, sweetbreads and other delicious body parts served as is or concocted into charcuteries. There are a few safe items on the menu in the event that one is not fond of animal parts used for things other than running.
The citrus salad ($11) was the easiest dish to understand without waiter interpretation. However, the thought of olives and oranges playing together in a salad was a bit odd. The chilis added a great kick and the abundant parsley added a little green. I suppose the olive might have been an attempt to add a bit of salt while deviating from the normal addition of some salty cheese but it was rather unnecessary. Overall, it had a freshness that offered a refreshing option to many of the other dishes on the menu.
The crostini ($12) were highly recommended by the otherwise preoccupied waiter. The sausage was the delicious mainstay but was covered with a rapini mixture that was highly oversalted, especially when topped with cheese. I was left to scrape the roughage off the remaining two pieces and discard it like an overcooked pizza crust so I could just focus on the meat.
The eggplant involtini ($14) was one of the few vegetarian dishes on the menu although it was priced like it had some kind of creature in it. It was served hot and the eggplant was spot on in terms of texture. From a flavour perspective, it too was a little heavy on the salt and a little more of the advertised roasted garlic would have been nice.
Maybe I didn’t have the balls to go for the tripe, so I went with another set of balls and opted for the classic polpetta ragu ($15). They were simply presented with crostini and sauce. Once again, there was an abundance of salt which almost made it unbearable. It was like taking tylenol; I only ate two and needed copious amounts of water to wash it down.
I’ve come to the conclusion that a $12 cocktail better make my meatballs tingle. I tried with the grappa sour (grappa, lemon, cardamon and egg white)…no tingling…just another example of me falling for the old put an egg in anything and I’ll order it trick.
I’m not sure if the abundant use of salt or the big prices left a worse taste in my mouth. The staff seemed a bit unfazed by my woes as there were no inquiries about my half eaten dishes (I was only asked when I got my coat and after I paid the bill) if there were any issues with the food. By then it didn’t matter. With an abundance of other small-plated ethnic choices available within a few blocks, I’ll get that tingly feeling elsewhere and leave the overpriced Italian fare to the other parts of town. Plus, I know a lot of places that serve a mean fruit salad.