Adam's Cafe, Olivia's, Mi Sueno... The tiny restaurant on 619 Bound Brook Road (Rt. 28) in Middlesex, NJ has gone through a lot of hands. The current incarnation is Il Sogno Dolce. This nine-table cafe, a few doors down from a tattoo parlor, has become my new place to celebrate special occasions (or just escape from the real world). It's casual enough to bring the kids, or hang with friends, as long as they dig the BYOB, Andrea Bochelli type of place. But sophisticated and intimate enough for a "wedding proposal dinner."
There are plenty of ways to start the meal off right. My three faves are the spicy chorizo bites with a balsamic glaze ($9), the herbed crabcake made with lump crabmeat and served with a remoulade sauce ($11), and the mesclun salad dotted with dried cranberries, candied pecans, and gorgonzola cheese, tossed with the right amount of balsamic vinaigrette ($10).
Now for the main course! The lobster ravioli with lemon marscapone sauce ($15) are homemade and filled with actual lobster pieces. My husband (and I, sneaking a couple of bites) fully enjoyed the pecan-encrusted tilapia with a white chocolate buerre blanc ($20). The filet of beef topped with boursin cheese, balsamic glaze and walnuts ($28) is high quality and definitely worth the splurge. But my favorite of all of the entrees is the chicken skewers with a coconut curry sea salt ($15), tender and tasty.
The owner, Michael is the chef on most days and also creates all the desserts. Many of them are available at Il Sogno Dolce's website bakery. All the desserts are delicious and whatever you pick will be great but there is ONE THING I am totally obsessed with: the Earl Grey chocolate mousse ($8). Normally, I don't spend much money on dessert and if I do, it's for a dessert that is split. The Earl Grey chocolate mousse is something that I do NOT share (so don't even try. I mean it.) The subtle tea flavor makes this mousse something for grownups only (like Peek Freans). It's not sold online but you can try the Earl Grey fudge which I understand is just as good. Want to wow everyone at your next party? You can also order baked goods ahead and just pick up at the restaurant.
Like to save money? Check out the Il Sogno Dolce Sweet Awards program.
Parking is available behind the restaurant's building. You can also park on the street after 6pm but I wouldn't... just from living in the area, I can tell you that people like to speed on that little stretch of road.
3-13-13 Il Sogno Dolce has closed.