What could be more romantic than a wedding in Venice?  Or to be more precise--a wedding with all those Venetian delicacies.  You don't have to plan a destination wedding or travel all the way to Europe to experience top notch culinary delights (although I can't think of anything more fun!).   Recently I had the pleasure of dining at Il Fornaio Restaurant on a week they just happened to be featuring cuisine from the Veneto region of Italy.  Talk about a culinary heaven! Rarely do I post about food and wines but today is the exception; I have to say, Il Fornaio which has restaurants scattered throughout the US  would be the perfect spot for a smaller wedding reception and definitely the go-to place for a rehearsal dinner.  As for a great menu, here's a taste of our evening out with eight very happy people who love special Italian food and wine--including former restaurant owner and caterer, now food critic, Robin Collins. Here's what she had to say about the menu: "Starting out with the Zuppa di Funghi e Asparagi (Asparagus), this a a soup that had a beautifully blended taste of asparagus, mushrooms, potato and white wine.  The textures really complimented each other nicely."  
Now for my own take on the dinner,  I'll say I'm not a huge tomato fan and neither is my husband but the Insalata di pomidoro was excellent.  This was followed with grilled sea scallops and three different courses of pasta dishes my favorite being something called, Bigoli alla Padovana with mushrooms in a thick red wine/tomato sauce.
Robin added though she isn't a lamb lover, "I felt I had to compliment the chef on something called Gnocchi de Castra, a lamb ragu.  There were those like myelf who weren't lamb fans, yet surprisingly we all found lamb not to be the main note in this dish as it was blended with cheese and potato dumplings.  Kudos the the chef--the texture of the gnocchi was perfect!"

Desert was marinated peaches served with amaretto gelato--an excellent finish!  

You can check out a partial sample of the menu below which I would personally recommend for any celebration  centered around a wedding or anniversary.   
Above Inalata di Pomidoro


Zuppa di Funghi e Asparagi
Asparagus and shiitake mushroom soup with potato, white wineand anasiago crouton
Insalata di Pomidoro
Heirloom tomato salad with spring onion, cucumber, basil and extra virgin olive oil.

Bigoli  alla Padovana
Pasta strands with Itlaian sausage, porcini mushrooms, tomato sauce,redwine and Grana Padano
Gnocchi de Castra
Housemade potato dumplings with lamb ragu and pecorino cheese
Risotto Mantecato al Branzino
Carnaroli rice and Mediterranean sea bass, shrimp, shallots, Trebbiano wine, brandy, herbs and green grapes
Sogliola al Porcini 
Filet of sole petrale sauteed with porcini mushroom and Prosecco sauce; served with grilled polenta.
Grigliata di Pesce con Polenta
Mixed grill of salmon, Petralesole prawn,sea scallopand calamari with lemon and parsley sauce; served with polenta and sauteed seasonal vegetables

Il Fornaio Restaurant in Corte Madera, California
You can also check out Il Fornaio's wedding and catering services here