a harvest dinner at Bite Bistro for hardcore foodies and everyday diners

David Bulman in the Bite Bistro kitchen

David Bulman in the Bite Bistro kitchen preparing a salad of brussels sprouts for the Late Harvest Tasting Dinner

Since Vivo Kitchen moved to Sewickley, the younger DiBatista generation, Danina and Martina, have taken over the old Bellevue space with a new restaurant–Bite Bistro. Just like Vivo, Bite Bistro pleases hardcore foodies and everyday diners alike.

David Bulman is the chef. David is classically trained in culinary arts and the man running the show behind the line. I have had the pleasure to teach culinary classes and cook with David. He’s very passionate about his work. David is a strong supporter of local and sustainable products, and it shows in his menu choices.

Last week, Bite Bistro had a late harvest dinner. A prix fixe menu–seven courses. Bite Bistro has a tasting menu once a week and a special prix fixe dinner like the one I attended once per month. These dinner events are a great opportunity for anyone to get a good understanding of what chefs are working with for the season and maybe get to know the chef’s style as well.

David’s style is about using good, local ingredients (when possible) and using preparations that feature those ingredients in uncomplicated ways. David tells me that dishes like these are what keep people coming back. And I have to agree, simple, well prepared choices are definite winners.

The menu ranged from beets, and brussels sprouts to a duck, quail, and chicken trio. I know how much David enjoys working with duck, so I was glad to see it in the menu.

Beets were in the opening course and then we enjoyed them for dessert. The beet gelato with Gorgonzola and walnuts was a big hit. David also sent to our table a granny smith gelato. This gelato is part of their current menu and was delicious, a great way to finish any meal year around. I know David just made more. Go try it, and you’ll tell me how good it was!

Quail, duck, and chicken

The third course was quail, duck, and chicken; red wine glace de poule; carrot, ginger, local kale, and turnips. Notice the delicious optional foie gras there at the back of the plate!

Vegetable spaghetti made of zucchini instead of pasta

An alternate selection for the third course was "Vegetable Spaghetti"--zucchini and cauliflower artfully shredded and dressed with chanterelle mushrooms and truffled pecorino.

Beet gelato with walnut glace and goronzola cheese

Beet gelato with walnut glace and goronzola cheese

Martina DiBatista in the dining room of Bite Bistro

Martina DiBatista in the dining room of Bite Bistro

morels

morel hunter

We finally got a little rain, temperatures are more stable and its starting to feel like spring in beautiful Western Pennsylvania.
Many have been waiting for these weather conditions since it indicates the beginning of morel season.

Mushroom foraging is a favorite activity of mine, and Glen Wantje was kind enough to take me with him on a early morning a couple of days ago.

It was a very successful foraging expedition. Our findings included both yellow and black morels.

At one point while I was concentrating on looking around the ground I happened to look up to see a shy but curious raccoon watching me from behind a tree only a few feet away from the mushrooms–maybe I was taking her breakfast. I’m sure there were plenty of mushrooms we didn’t find, plenty for everyone.

Finding wild eatables is something I enjoy very much. Thank you Glen!

white morel

yellow morel (Morchella esculenta)

black morel

black morel (Morchella elata)

Glen

Glen sneaking up on some mushrooms

raccoon

This woodland creature is very interested in our activities. We are trespassing on her mushroom hunting turf!

a nice haul!

mushroom breakfast

Breakfast of champions!

a peek behind the scenes at Vivo

Sam and I will be sharing a little behind the scenes action on Tuesday, April 27th at 7:00 p.m.

Come and be part of a hands-on experience in the kitchen!

Let us share the culinary philosophy we practice daily. Fresh and local will be the focus.

The Menu:

Appetizer: House Made Duck Prosciutto with Melon
Insalata: Salad with Orange Vinaigrette
Entree: Black Angus Beef Tenderloin Rosemario with Baby Zucchini and Fingerling Potatoes
Dolci: Anisette Doughnuts with Vanilla Gelato & Caramel

For reservations, call 412-761-9500

Vivo
565 Lincoln Avenue
Bellevue, PA 15202-3531