Trattoria Cuoco

meatballs, gemelli and lasagna bolognese

TMA'ed while jammin' to Too Good by Drake ft Rihanna

Mari: Note to ourselves, a lot of Seattle restaurants are closed on Mondays. Luckily, Trattoria Cuoco wasn’t. It's an Italian restaurant by Tom Douglas that has been around longer than we have in Seattle and I was surprised we hadn't been there before. Smack in the middle of Amazon central, Cuoco is in a prime location for team lunches and what not.

Temi: It's a nice place. I definitely felt under-dressed for it. I had just come from the gym, so I was rocking that sweaty chic.  The inside of Cuoco has that dark "romantic" lighting. Even though it was still bright outside, it felt like the inside of the restaurant was only lit by the fire in the pizza oven. We decided to sit outside.

trattoria cuoco entrance

Mari: We are not at our best after work or post gym because we are usually ravenous. I get super loopy and Temi is too tired to make fun of me or at the very least converse. A snickers just doesn't cut it for us and we need real food. So we were quick to order Dahlia Bakery Bread and Braised Meatballs to start with. The bread was what you expect at Italian restaurants, warm carbs with olive oil that hit the spot.

dahlia bakery bread and olive oil
braised meatballs with melted provolone

Temi: The meatballs were really good! They were perfectly seared and not dry at all with the provolone adding that wonderful cheesiness that all meatballs deserve. Most notable though was the marinara. It didn’t scream "I'm all tomatoes". It was flavorful and didn’t have that overpowering tangy tomato taste that a lot of sauces tend to have. For our main dishes Mari got the Gemelli and I got the Lasagna Bolognese.

Mari: I believe that pasta can't be filling unless you add some meat to it. But gosh darn this Gemelli pasta proved me wrong. With the squash, minty pesto sauce, pistachios and ricotta cheese it was a hearty blend that tasted like summer. There was the right amount of kick to it and the pistachios provided the saltiness to balance the sweet squash.

gemelli pasta with pesto

Temi: While Mari was digging into her meat free pasta, I was enjoying the comfort of my Lasagna. It's been a LONG time since I've had lasagna, and this one was very rich. Again the marinara sauce was very well balanced and instead of smothering the lasagna in sauce like you often see, the lasagna lay on the sauce so you could portion the sauce to lasagna ratio for each bite. Perfection.

lasagna bolognese

Mari: I could tell Temi enjoyed the food. After a few bites, she was back to her normal self: conversational. After stuffing our faces, we were offered a slice of coconut crème pie. The waiter had cut one slice too many for the table next to us and who are we to turn down free pie?! The coconut pie was from Dhalia bakery and was the fluffiest pie I've had in a while. What a way to top off a fantastic meal.

In Summary

We ventured out for dinner in South Lake Union on a Monday night after 7 pm. Lesson learned: most places close early or are closed on Mondays. Luckily the options around Amazon campus aren't that limited and we found ourselves at Trattoria Cuoco. Nothing satisfies your hunger quicker than Italian . We started with Dahlia Bakery bread and Braised Meatballs, followed by Lasagna Bolognese and Gemelli, and topped off with Dahlia Coconut Cream Pie. Mari swore by the Gemelli and was pleasantly surprised at how hearty it was despite having no meat and Temi's Lasagna Bolognese was rich and comforting. Overall, there is a reason this restaurant is still around even with the ever changing food scene in SLU because it truly has some staple menu items that taste fantastic.

Ambience: Romantic with a nice patio

Wait time:  10 mins

Food:  Italiano

Would we go back?  Definitely

Halal Friendly? Yes

Price: $$


TMA Moment

Free pie say what?!

cooconut creme pie