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Por Ti Funghi, Volare

Hole in the wall?

While in San Diego with a couple of runners the night before the Rock and Roll Marathon, we needed some carbs. I wasn’t running, but I am never one to turn down a carbo-load. Knowing nothing of Italian food in San Diego and not really wanting to go to Olive Garden (no offense to the Garden, but we wanted to support something local), we turned to Urban Spoon. Yes, there’s an app for that. This directed us to Volare, a sort of whole in the wall in a sort of sketchy part of town. It looked perfect.

Starting strong.

We walked in and there was a wait. Some were regulars talking about how amazing the place was and others were also loading up on carbs before the race as well. After about 20 minutes, we were brought to a table. I opened the menu and was astonished. There was not one pasta dish above 10 bucks. I know that’s not crazy, but coming from LA it is amazing. We started off with a cheesy garlic bread and then I opted for their gnocchi with romano sauce. The waitress told me the sauce was a creamy marinara, and this sounded just great to me. I was wrong, but first came the cheesy garlic bread.

The bread wasn’t just some poor man’s pizza without sauce, instead it was composed of a baguette topped with garlic butter and cheese melted over it. It was a great carby way to start the meal. Unfortunately the meal didn’t finish as strong.

Mushrooms are nothing to joke about.

When my gnocchi came out, I was excited. At least until I saw what was in my sauce. Mushrooms. Everywhere. Nowhere in the menu were mushrooms mentioned and the waitress definitely said nothing of the vile fungi when describing the sauce. This was no good and I was forced to eat around these terrible things. I liked the gnocchi, which was soft and bulbous. I even liked the sauce, which worked really well with the gnocchi. Unfortunately it was hard to enjoy these things while eating around mushrooms.

It seemed I was the only one suffering, though, because my eating companions really loved their meals. Like truly loved them. Nonetheless, just tell me when I’m gonna be stuck with mushrooms. I want to like places like this, but mushrooms in my sauce make it tough.