Carrabbas Fire Finished First Tastes

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carrabbas fire finished first tastes event sampling menu with reserved sign on table

Tonight, Panda and I went to Carrabbas for a special event they were holding. They’ve got their Fire Finished dishes available seasonally and they were offering samplers for free at their Fire Finished First Tastes event for those who signed up. We arrived around 6 and took up spots at the reserved tables set up near the bar. After sipping on drinks for a bit, the food started coming out. First up was the Fire-Roasted Mushrooms with sausage, peppers, fennel, onion, breadcrumbs, artichoke, and cheese:

carrabbas fire-roasted mushrooms appetizer sample

I enjoyed this dish a lot because I’m a huge fan of stuffed mushrooms. The taste was fabulous and the tomato-y sauce was a great touch. Panda loved it so much he cleared the plate. I’d definitely order this next time we’re here! Then we got the bread to share:

carrabbas bread and olive oil with cracked pepper

There was something a little bitter about it, but I did like how soft it was. After we chowed down on that, we got the Bistecca Ardente, a USDA sirloin with roasted tomatoes, blue cheese, and basil:

carrabbas bistecca ardente sirloin with roasted tomatoes sample

I’m not really into steaks but I did enjoy this taste. It might be the first time I’ve eaten a pinkish sirloin. I like that they topped it with tomatoes. I wouldn’t normally get this, but it was enjoyable. Up next was the Rigatoni Al Forno pasta with sausage and various cheeses:

carrabbas rigatoni al forno pasta dish with sausage and cheese

This was a solid pasta dish, though the cheese was a bit strong for me. I like the sausage and pasta – a pretty classic dish. After that came the Cedar Plank-Fired Salmon with jumbo lump crabmeat and lemon butter sauce:

carrabbas cedar plank-fired salmon with jumbo lump crabmeat samples

I loved the concept of this dish, though I would have liked to taste the crab a bit more. I think it got a bit overcooked since the pieces are smaller than you’d usually get when you order the dish. I’ve eaten a lot of salmon lately so I need a bit of a break, but this was good and I’d try it again. The last savory dish to come out was the Nonna Testa’s Baked Pasta with penne in pesto cream sauce and pine nuts, spinach, zucchini, and cheese:

carrabbas nonna testa's baked pasta sample dish

By this time I was so full I could hardly eat any of this. I liked the flavor and I would love to try this again another day when I can start with an empty stomach. Panda loves the pine nuts and I like their use of spinach and zucchini. And then to round it all off, we had creme brulee for dessert!

carrabbas creme brulee sample

Yum!! This is a fantastic dessert with amazing crispy bits and a rich creaminess that is oh so smooth. It was almost too rich for me to finish, but I did anyway. 🙂 I wish there was more of the caramelized part! After all this, two glasses of Coke and a glass and a half of water, I was stuffed. We stuck around to thank the manager, chef, and waiters and I left a tip for the both of us before heading out.

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