Il Chianti chef greets diners while serving up flavorful Italian fare

Mar 10, 2017 444

“I need a Nonna,” the server at Il Chianti Italian restaurant in Henderson said. She was referring to the Carbonara della Nonna on the menu — a rich, rustic dish of linguine, pancetta and Parmesan. But the image that instantly popped up in my mind was of an older Italian lady up to her elbows in marinara. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could all have a nonna cooking us comforting plates of pasta each day?

Thanks to Rodolfo Janeo Jr., a former executive chef at the popular Ventano Italian Grille, anyone can enjoy molto delizioso dishes, whether their grandmother hails from bella Italia or not. Lynn pear and cheese tortellini ($23) is an attention-getter. It’s a fresh breath of autumnal air (a pleasant surprise in the spring), the natural affinity between pears and cheese only highlighted by the lightened tomato-vodka sauce and just enough gently sauteed spinach. There also was a generous number of rock shrimp, but while their lobster-sweet flavor contributed interesting points of contrast, the dish was so well executed it would have been fine without them.

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