There has been a growing trend of locally sourced ingredients in restaurants and Prato is one of these restaurants. With the exception of the desert menu, their menu changes frequently and is primarily influenced by the ingredients available to them on a daily basis. Though the majority of their ingredients are local, there are some ingredients that are not like their supply of semolina flour is imported from Italy. They do, however, make all their pastas and pizza dough from scratch, in-house!
I finally got around to going to Prato for the first time today. I had made a last-minute attempt to go for dinner a couple of weeks ago, but since I had not made reservations I was unable to get a table. This is expected though, considering the celebrity status of executive chef Brandon McGlamery whose previous work includes places such as Napa’s French Laundry and Luma on Park.
Prato has a very open and spacious feel. Their large, window-panned doors are kept wide open providing almost a continuous feel between the side-walk and inside tables. Their décor has a casual feel with a large bar in the center, brick pizza oven in the back all surrounded by tables and booths. They offer plenty of seating, though not enough for the size of the crowds they attract for dinner.
Being mainly an Italian restaurant, Prato’s menu is composed of appetizers, pizzas, salads, pastas and some miscellaneous items. I wanted to try a variety of items so we ordered the Widowmaker Pizza, Roasted Butternut Squash salad and ½ order of the Duck Bolognese.
The salad was composed of Burrata Mozzarella, pistachio vinaigrette, red onions and pieces of roasted butternut squash with arugula and mixed/field greens. This salad was light and crisp with a nice combination of flavors. The only flaw in my opinion was that the butternut squash was served in several smaller pieces with some of the pieces being more cooked and others less cooked.
Following our salad was the Duck Bolognese. A rich dish indeed, perfectly cooked, fresh pasta served with a duck ragu but it lacks excitement. It is a mild dish and I spruced it up with some crushed red peppers for additional flavoring.
The last, but not least, my favorite dish of the three, the Widowmaker Pizza. Fennel sausage, arugula, romesco sauce and 1 over-easy egg in the center. Cut into a checkered pattern with the egg in the center. Our server suggested that we use the egg for “dipping” the crust into to, but, in my opinion there is no wrong way to eat this delicious dish. Thinner dough lightly covered with romesco sauce, cheese, pieces of sausage, over easy egg then all topped with fresh arugula post-baking. I love pizza with eggs and I have really enjoyed this one.
Prato is a great addition to Winter Park’s collection of restaurants. It’s a great place for lunch, serving a wide variety of quality items for a very good price. I will certainly go back, especially for dinner.