Rites of Spring: Baricelli Inn, Melange roll out new menus


It’s spring, that time of year when chefs traditionally freshen up their pantries with peas, asparagus, strawberries, and early greens. Among the spots giving their menus a seasonal twist, count Paul Minnillo’s Baricelli Inn, Niki Gillota’s Gypsy Beans & Baking Co., and Melange, where chef Adam Schmith’s new menu debuted last week. ... Here are some mouthwatering highlights: At Little Italy’s award-winning Baricelli Inn (2203 Cornell Rd., 216-791-6500), Chef Minnillo’s new menu maintains his commitment to sophisticated entrees and rustic pastas pegged at less than jaw-dropping prices. Consider, for instance, the golden trout with dandelion greens, pecans, and bacon ($23); spring risotto, with asparagus and fresh peas ($12 for a half portion/$22 for a whole); or the ravioli gnudi (literally, “nude ravioli”) with morel mushrooms and ramps ($12/$22). Click here to view the entire spring menu. And about that gnudi, which is basically the ravioli filling served without its pasta wrapper: Although the dish has been sweeping NYC for at least a year, Minnillo is one of the first local chefs to serve it. To learn more about the dainty little morsels, click here. Meantime, at Gypsy Beans (6425 Detroit Ave., 216-939-9009), Gillotta and chef Mike Dunlap have designed an extensive new menu for spring and summer, including a pork tenderloin plate ($7.95), served with quinoa and a compote of blueberries and red onions; and a smoked salmon salad ($10.95), drizzled with olive oil and lemon juice. The team also brought back the popular chicken salad croissant ($8.95) and the California Salad ($9.95), with chicken breast or smoked tofu, strawberries, mandarin oranges, spiced pecans, and a strawberry-lemon vinaigrette. And finally, at Melange (2101 Richmond Rd., in La Place; 216-378-9755), Chef Schmith’s new menu is a concise, well-organized lineup of contemporary comfort fare, with offerings that range from chicken pot pie ($15) and macaroni and cheese ($18) to a grilled pork chop with cilantro rice ($22) and pan-roasted halibut with fennel, gigande beans, and corn salad ($26). --- Elaine T. Cicora Read Elaine Cicora's restaurant reviews, food news, and comprehensive dining guide on the restaurant page at clevescene.com.


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