An Italy-to-Table, Farm-to-Table, Neighborhood Dining Experience
It had been far too long since our team dined at MōMō Pizzeria & Ristorante, so we decided to go back to check out all the fresh, new dishes on its seasonally-changing menu. The Italian eatery, owned by the delightful Anthony (Tony) Bonelli, embraces an open floor plan with seating that surrounds the massive wine bar at the heart of the restaurant. We love the sophisticated design of MōMō’s interior and the cool-toned decor that enhances the natural light coming in through its large windows. As classy as it is, MōMō maintains that neighborhood feel that lets you unwind as you treat yourself to a few sips and bites.
Speaking of sips, MōMō has one of the most well-rounded wine lists in Lincoln, bringing together popular vintages harvested in France, Spain, Italy, California, Oregon, and Washington. The restaurant utilizes the Wineemotion wine dispenser and preservation system, the latest technology in wine preservation capable of preserving wine up to 30 days without altering the wine’s organoleptic properties. Wine lovers can appreciate this when they order one or two glasses for themselves, or they can choose to order a bottle for the table from MōMō’s extensive selection. There is also a house-made sangria that might just become your go-to as the heat continues to roll back in.
For the Cabernet fans out there, we recommend the B-Side. It has a smooth taste and perfect balance to it. We chased the red down with a little trivia knowledge from Tony on how the B-Side got its name. We learned that it’s a nod to the 45 records of the 60s, which featured a popular single on the top or A-side of the record and a non-title track on the B-side. Often times, those lesser known songs on the B-side would gain their own following of people who appreciated quality outside of the mainstream.
To make sure our wine didn’t get lonely, we ordered a charcuterie board as an appetizer. You haven’t experienced charcuterie until you’ve had MōMō’s charcuterie. Served with lavosh cracker bread and olive oil baked crostini, the board features a variety of fresh meats, cheeses, pickled vegetables, and brilliantly selected jams and dips. The red pepper jam really made an impression on our group, and we thought the balance of salty and sweet notes throughout was well done. From rich honeycomb to bold blue cheese stuffed olives, it was a satisfying assortment.
We also ordered the Tuna Crudo which is beautifully served on a block of Himalayan salt to enhance the taste. The five-ounce seared yellowfin tuna loin has that melt-in-your-mouth factor with its freshness and lemon-squeezed flare. In addition, the crab cakes exceeded all expectations. They were dense yet tender and juicy. We were relieved that they weren’t overly battered and breaded.
MōMō is well known for their hand-tossed, Neopolitan style pizza, which they bake in a stone hearth, wood-fired oven—honoring the true Italian way. Our group gave the Lobster & Shrimp Hollandaise pizza a try, and none of us have been the same since. This pizza is unlike anything we’ve tasted before. It has a strong toasted flavor that balances out the buttery fresh seafood toppings and melted mozzarella and provolone.
The most al-lure-ing entrée to hit our table was the Branzino. MōMō cooks and serves this Mediterranean sea bass whole to retain all the natural flavor. Plus, it makes for a dramatic presentation. The parmesan herb risotto on the side adds a complimentary creamy texture to the plate without taking away from the delicate sweetness of the fish.
For dessert, we nibbled on the Flourless Chocolate Cake and the Raspberry Pistachio Bread Pudding, which were both a delight. The no-flour approach to the chocolate cake is different but it works, and we loved the warmth in each bite of the bread pudding. Just like with the rest of the menu, the ingredients used to hand-craft these dessert items are locally-sourced and of the highest quality.
Hats off to Executive Chef Jonah King who has been with MōMō since the opening. He is the mastermind behind the unique, evolving menu—keeping us on our toes and our taste buds pleasantly surprised. We also appreciate MōMō’s knowledgeable staff, many who have also been with the restaurant since its inception.