Over the years I’ve learned some things about being married to an Italian…well, I’ve learned lots of things really, but perhaps the most important thing I’ve learned is that family and food matter. Now I love good food, but there’s something about the Italian culture that takes food to a whole other level.
Life and family happen around a table laden with delectable food – cured meats, olives, tomatoes drizzled with olive oil, pasta, bread, bowls of olive oil, chunks of Parmigiano- Reggiano (that’s Parmesan but never out of a can), a good bottle of wine and I did I mention bread? You can never have too much bread.
Now here’s the thing…finding authentic Italian cuisine in Franklin, TN has been, well…a challenge. Usually it’s a drive to Nashville for the real deal, but NOT anymore, because Trattoria A – “A Social Gathering Place” has it all and more!
Trattoria A is an intimate 27 seat authentic trattoria in every sense of the word, where the conversation is lively and you gather and chat with diners seated next to you. It’s robust and the food is out of this world, thanks to Owner/Chef Matt Antonovich who has a 40 year career in some of the finest kitchens in America, not to mention time spent learning and studying in Italy in Rome, Florence and Emilia.
Reminiscent of small trattorias found in the villages of Italy, Trattoria A begins each day making bread, which is baked fresh each day. Local farm eggs and imported flour from Italy are used for the homemade pasta and it makes a big difference. Take about farm to table! Farmers show up at the restaurant early in the morning to bring the freshest ingredients to Chef Matt. Everything is locally sourced, but if it’s not authentic, then it’s imported from Italy. Authentic really does make a huge difference.
Chef Matt shared his vision of Trattoria A with me…
“This restaurant is very personal to me and I wanted to bring to the Franklin community a true gathering place where locals and visitors would come together to experience a true trattoria beginning with daily marketing, farm to table ingredients, with an emphasis on making everything from scratch.”
Well, Matt, you’ve hit it out of the park as they say and we’re grateful.
Our dinner was an amazing sampling of some of Chef Matt’s favorites coupled with a few items we selected.
We began with the Heritage Caprese Salad.Where these heirloom tomatoes came from in winter is beyond me, but they were the sweetest tomatoes ever. The tomatoes are dressed with fresh mozzarella, pesto, balsamic-molasses and a kale.
Next we shared Cicchetti, a dish that changes frequently. Think seasonal small plates of Italy with vegetables, grains and olives. This is a perfect dish if you are vegetarian.
Now mind you, I’m feeling like I might have had an elegant sufficiency at this point, but Chef Matt delighted us with a Bistecca Fiorentina – a 24 oz. Porterhouse steak, cooked to perfection and topped off with sautéed mushrooms infused with truffles! Think angels singing.
We aren’t finished. Next up the Citrus Chicken pillared, reminiscent of chicken piccata, but with garlic, wilted greens, capers and double cream butter. Yep…double cream butter. It was divine and very lemony.
For dessert, we ate a few bites each of a delectable Tira Misu, made lovingly in house and a Budino, butterscotch pudding, whipped creme fraiche and salted caramel.
I know…we indulged but what can you do?
What a delight to know that just 7 minutes from my house is a complete Italian neighborhood trattoria serving the most authentic food. Leave your fancy clothes at home and come ready to eat classic and contemporary Italian dishes. Trattoria A does not serve liquor, but you are welcome to bring your favorite wine for a small corkage fee.
Can you tell I’m excited? A huge amount of pressure has just been lifted after off my kitchen duty.
Trattoria A is located at 1210 West Main Street, Franklin, TN.
For reservations please call 858.886.6818.
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