Cotto A Legna – Geneva, IL

On Saturday, we were visiting Mike’s parents and they gave us the opportunity to escape sans children for a few hours to have dinner.  Our original destination was Bien Trucha to use a giftcard we received at Christmas 2011 (yes, that long ago!) but the wait was an hour and a half and we just weren’t willing to wait that long.  We will make it there again soon, hopefully!

We eventually decided to try Cotta A Legna — a wood fire pizza restaurant near the train station in Geneva, Illinois.  We originally walked by the location over a year ago and commented that a pizza and wine bar sounded right up our alley.  Cotta A Legna earns 3 1/2 Wooden Spoons overall.  The food was good but it isn’t one of those places that I’ll crave going back to.

Mike ordered a glass of wine and I had water.  We ordered the chevice and honey salmon brushetta as an appetizer.  We each had one piece of each.  The chevice bruschetta included roasted tomato, sweet crab, and shrimp and was dressed with lemon aioli and argula (photo above).  The honey smoked salmon bruschetta included gorgonzola, roasted apples, caramelized onions, aioli and micro greens.  Both of the bruschettas were very good and the French bread it is served on is delicious.  I could easily eat only bruschetta as my meal.

We also ordered a pizza.  We originally ordered the truffle pizza that was advertised as their special but our waitress said it was not the truffles they had intended as the shipment did not come in.  We changed our minds and went with the basic margherita.  The margherita pizza included tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella, fresh basil, and olive oil.  We were able to see the wood fire grill from our table where they were cooking the pizzas which was neat and the crust of the pizza was delicious – however, the wait time for our pizza was bit long.  The pizza overall needed more sauce — or dipping sauce — to add a bit more flavor.

The restaurant has a fun vibe, but the employees don’t seem particularly happy to be there.  Our waitress was sufficient but nothing to write home about — and everyone walking by seemed to be in a hurry.  It definitely was subpar for service even though the food was quite good.

It isn’t a place I’d take my young kids — probably not until they are at least 10 — just due to the overall atmosphere.  It’s definitely a pizza place with a more grownup feel.

As far as cost, our dinner was very reasonable — but there were pricey options as well. Our bruschetta appetizer was 12.50 for 4 pieces.  The pizza (8 pieces total) was 10.00 and Mike’s wine was 8.00 bringing our total with tax to only $32.79 — which I think is completely reasonable for a nice dinner out.

Cotto A Legna is worth checking out — for their extensive wine list, yummy pizza crust, and bruschetta — but only earns 3 1/2 Wooden Spoons due to subpar service, unhappy employees, and wait time.

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