Monday, August 4, 2014

Dearborn's Giulio and Sons Offers Tasty Vegetarian Options
Our dinner group, with Chefs Vera and Mills
At times, being a vegetarian has its challenges. For example, when eating out I am sometimes underwhelmed by the vegetarian options available at certain restaurants. On the other hand, one of the things I love about adhering to a vegetarian diet is that it has often pushed me outside of my typical food comfort zone. If  I had turned vegetarian in my 20s, I probably would have lived on grilled cheese sandwiches. Now I'm more willing to try new things, which often leads me to delicious culinary discoveries that, at one time, I would have never believed I could love.

A recent dinner at Giulio and Sons, located within the Adoba Hotel in Dearborn, Michigan, is a case in point. I met up with a few fellow local bloggers (Gwendolyn from Finding Sanity in Our Crazy Life, Amber from Metro Detroit Mommy, and Stephanie from Mom Among Chaos)  to sample some items from the new dinner menu. Having no idea what to expect, other than a vague idea that Giulio and Sons serves Italian fare, I kept an open mind and palate.

Giulio and Sons has recently welcomed a new head chef, Chef Gabriel Vera, and a new sous chef, Chef Byron Paine Mills. The two have collaborated to create a new menu of unique, contemporary Italian dishes.

First Impression The Adoba Hotel, at 600 Town Center Drive, was easy to find coming from I-94. Free parking is ample and the restaurant, on the second floor, was easily accessible from the front lobby via stairs or elevator. Giulio and Sons itself is lovely, if a little dimly lit (some might say romantic).

Staff  From the hostess to the waiter, to the manager and chef, everyone was friendly and accommodating. Our waiter was especially wonderful, which enhanced our dining experience all the more.

Food We sampled smaller portions of several menu items, as well as a full sized main course and the decadent dessert buffet. In short, we ate until we were ready to burst.

Giulio's Caprese Salad  Heirloom tomatoes, barrata cheese, micro basil, smoked sea salt, and house made balsamic reduction.
This was not something I would normally order because I am not much of a fan of anything balsamic. However, mixed with the delectable dainty tomatoes and the flavorful cheese, it was a very tasty combination.
Would I order it again? Yes, I would order it to share. Balsamic is still not my favorite, but I was pleasantly surprised.
Miniature Portobello Burger  Made with chimichurri sauce, roasted red peppers, and Swiss cheese on toasted brioche.
This is something else I would not typically order because I generally steer clear of mushrooms.  In fact, I'm going to have to admit that this was the first time I had ever tasted a portobello mushroom. Unbelievable, I know. But I went to dinner with an open mind and I'm glad I did because this little "burger" was so enjoyable. (My stomach is growling as I type this.)
Would I order it again? Yes, it was quite good. And now I can say I like portobello mushrooms. See what I mean about vegetarianism? If I weren't a vegetarian, I could have easily passed my entire life without ever trying this!
 Vegetable Lasagna  A 60 layer vegetable lasagna served with marinara sauce.
The spiciness of this dish really overpowered the flavors. I like a little spice, but not this much. I'm not sure if it was the marinara or the lasagna itself, but this was definitely my least favorite sampling.
Would I order it again? No, I don't think so.
Homemade Mushroom Ravioli  With brandy tarragon cream sauce and glazed sweet peas.
Again, because of the mushrooms, I would not have ordered this on my own. But I loved it. The sauce was perfectly creamy and scrumptious, and the mushrooms were just right - not overpowering at all.
Would I order it again? Absolutely, yes. This may have been my favorite dish of the night. 
Lemon Parsley Risotto  With chili oil, sweet peas, and parmigiano reggiano cheese.
This was a creamy, flavorful, mouthwatering dish. It is really too bad it came last because I was fairly bursting at the seams by this time. But no worries - I brought it home to finish.
Would I order it again? Yes, I would most definitely order this again.
Clockwise from top: Risotto, Vegetable Lasagna, Caprese Salad, Ravioli, Portobello Burger

Despite the fact that we were stuffed to capacity by the time our last tasting was brought to the table, none of use would think of leaving without a visit to the dessert buffet. I would come back to Giulio and Sons just for dessert. It was amazing! There were platters upon platters full of various cakes and treats. The bread pudding was particularly heavenly, but there were so many options it was really difficult to choose. Save room, trust me!

We tried so much, but we didn't try everything. The menu is full of many enticing options. We also didn't try the salad bar, but I took a peak and was impressed with the expansive spread. In speaking with the chef, I was also impressed to learn that Giulio and Sons uses many local ingredients from the surrounding area, and that all pasta is made in house.

Giulio and Sons is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, seven days a week. Guests staying in the hotel can also order up room service from the restaurant. This would be a perfect place to come for a special occasion meal. It's a bit of a splurge, but well worth it. (Note: I did not see the breakfast and lunch menus.)

I had a very enjoyable dining experience at Giulio and Sons, and would like to thank the staff and management for a fabulous evening of good food and good company.

Please click over to read Gwendolyn, Amber, and Stephanie's takes on our evening at Giulio and Sons! 

Finding Sanity in Our Crazy Life - Unveiling of Giulio and Sons New Menu
Metro Detroit Mommy - Check Out These 5 New Menu Items at Giulio and Sons
Mom Among Chaos -New Menu at Giulio and Sons Restaurant

Disclaimer: As part of a blogger dinner, I received a complimentary meal from Giulio and Sons. All opinions are my own. No other compensations was received.


Lindsey said...

The menu looks and sounds amazing! Definitely would love to try them out one day.

Unknown said...

These look so tasty. I'd love to try the vegetable lasagna and the Miniature Portobello Burger.

Liz Parker said...

Those all look yummy. I love mushrooms and balsamic so some of these would have been right up my alley.

Unknown said...

Looks like a great menu! Wish I could have joined you all, maybe next time!

DetroitDuchess said...

I could eat Caprese and Risotto all day and all night! YUM!

Gwendolyn M. said...

Your vegetarian dishes looked very delicious and I am a big meat eater. Everything was super tasty!