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Bicyclette Cookshop

Monthly Restaurant Review with Carmen Tomasetti

Bicyclette Cookshop, a hidden gem in North Naples, provides an exceptional dining experience akin to a restaurant in New York or Los Angeles. Tucked in an unassuming corner of  Vanderbilt Beach Road and US 41, we're welcomed by the team to a sophisticated dining room. Cloaked in warm wood tones and soothing neutral shades, a buzz from the kitchen can be heard over old-school hip-hop music, setting the stage for what's to be a surprising and delightful meal.

The menu is a parade of perfection, starting with snacks and signature cocktails. The "Allora" cocktail, a blend of fresh strawberries, passionfruit and vodka is finished with pink Pop Rocks that excite the palate for what's to come.  "Missing Piedicolle" is named for owner, Louie Mele's, 2nd hometown in Italy and it's the perfect rye-based cocktail for cooler weather. The buzzed-about Zucchini Blossoms don't disappoint, a contrast of delicate and bold, stuffed with ricotta cheese and nduja sausage. While difficult to choose favorites, the Oyster Po' Boy Sliders and Snapper Ceviche stand out as favorite starters.  All three items are great representations of Chef Kayla Pfeiffer's style of cooking, taking classic dishes and making them better.  Kayla's Po' Boy is a refined version of the original, with cornmeal-crusted gulf oysters and house-made okra remoulade nestled in soft potato buns.  The Ceviche features locally caught red snapper, quickly marinated in a slightly spicy Leche de Tigre Sauce that's good enough to drink! 
 
Among the mains, the Chicken Schnitzel is a standout:  A huge, crispy chicken breast atop bright rocket pesto and shaved watermelon radishes.   Veal Short Ribs, a dish we'd never seen, fall off the bone.  Glazed with Chinese Char Sui barbecue sauce, they're rich and satisfying but unlike any beef shortribs we've tried before. The Porchetta Entree is a testament to traditional cooking, with succulent pork and crispy skin served with a slightly sweet butternut squash salad.  It's evident that every dish has been carefully created by Chef Kayla, no detail overlooked and each one showcases unexpected combinations of ingredients that "wow."
 
For wine lovers, there's a list that complements Chef Kayla's creative food, spanning new world California natural wines to old world Burgundies.  We enjoyed an obscure red Beaujolais from Julienas with the mains that reminded us all of a recent trip to Europe.  The staff is well informed and gracious, helping to make recommendations and explain preparations.  Each person we encounter seems genuinely excited to be there, and for good reason: The restaurant has been collecting positive press since it's opening in November 2023 and in January, Chef Kayla was crowned champion on the Food Network's "Chopped." 

Open daily for lunch and dinner, the menu offers something for everyone in a vibrant setting that feels far more luxe than its neighbors.  In the coming weeks, the restaurant plans to add a supplemented takeout program for nearby hotels and beachgoers.  Bicyclette Cookshop is just what North Naples needed and we're thrilled to have finally had the chance to experience it.  

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