I’d take a gander and say most of us don’t venture down to Hyde Park all too often. Well, now you have an excuse to go! Actually, a couple it seems, as Hyde Park is blowing up lately with lots of hot, new dining spots. One of which is A10.

Sleek, sexy and almost a modern meets rustic feel, A10 boasts wooden tables, wooden bars and large-bulbed, simple chandeliers dangling from the industrial-like ceiling. Following up with the industrial feel are exposed brick walls, draped with vibrantly patterned tapestries.

Small plates, large plates, pizza plates, pasta plates. They’ve got ‘em – bringing us upscale Italian with an edge. So, where to start you ask? Go for a couple of small plates and a pizza to snack on with your table. The pizzas are easily sharable, but they are small, which makes them great for a first course. A10’s small plates range from your standard oysters on the half shell to your not-so-standard citrus cured trout bruschetta with black radish, celery and pomelo (southeastern citrus fruit – don’t worry I didn’t know what it was either).

As for the pizza, go for the country bacon. I mean, you should want it just from the name alone, but I’ll describe it for you. Caramelized onions, crème fraîche, and generous pieces of bacon lay atop a crisp, rustic crust that’s cut into two-medium sized triangles. As I said, you should try to share this, but eating it alone is definitely doable (and acceptable in my mind).

Moving forward, here’s where the tough decision comes along. Pasta or large plate? Of course you could get a bunch of both and share with the whole table, but that’s a little more difficult to do. Cool tidbit: You can get smaller portions of the pastas if you’d like to make them small plates as well. Or, you could do dinner size. Go big or go home, I say. But let’s remember, I like to eat a lot. Plus, the pastas are made in-house.

I went for the lamb chops for my main course, which were cooked perfectly, although they had some interesting garnishes and accompaniments. However, the lamb chops are no longer on the menu, so I guess we can forget about those. Current large plates range from poached halibut to chicken alla Milanese. Milanese basically means thin meat lightly breaded and shallow-fried. In other words, delicious.

Looking for a sweet treat to end the night? A10 has some interesting choices like sweat tea soft serve, but again they also have more classic Italian desserts such as panna cotta. If you’re not one with a sweet tooth, try the daily cheese plate. Oh so Italian.  

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