Bertucci’s

533 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA 02215

My friend, Cathy, and I have trudged through two marathons before (Pittsburgh and Philadelphia!) so when Bertucci’s asked me to write some words about carbo-loading for the upcoming Boston Marathon, we were so ready. The marathon itself is a huge event in Boston, with everyone referring it to “Marathon Monday,” volunteering for various events surrounding the race, and lining up and down Commonwealth Avenue to watch it on the big day.

The Kenmore Square location of Bertucci’s serves up lots of pasta to marathon runners every year before the big day, and we got to sample some of the favorites. In short, carbo-loading is what long-distance runners do the night before big races to store up quick energy, and big pasta dinners are a popular way to do so.

We started off with the warmest, softest rolls and a glass of Coppola Blanco, a crisp, refreshing white wine. And then, we tried a LOT of pasta, so get your eyes ready…

We tried the Chicken Domani (above), which came with gemelli pasta, spinach, sautéed chicken, and Asiago cheese in a white wine sage sauce. Cathy and I both enjoyed this dish, and I particularly liked the light sage sauce that complemented the texture of the pasta well.

Below, we have the Shrimp Rossini, which was spaghetti in a tomato cream sauce with capers and sautéed shrimp. This was my favorite out of all the pastas we tried because it had a nice touch of hot pepper that added so much flavor to the dish.

Next, we tried the Lobster Ravioli (below), which had a tender, sweet filling and was served in a light cream sauce with roasted garlic and tomatoes.

Our last pasta dish of the night was the Baked Tortellini and Chicken Gratinati, which was a baked tortellini dish with chicken, tomatoes, cream, ricotta, mozzarella, and Romano cheeses. There was a lot of cheese in this one and definitely filled us up quickly.

Onto the dessert! We shared a Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie (above), which was a deliciously decadent pie with a chocolate cookie crust, and caramel and chocolate sauce on top. “This was my favorite part of the meal,” Cathy said. “I really liked the texture of it — very smooth and creamy, so it reminded me of pudding.”

We also shared a Brick Oven Baked Chocolate Chip Cookie, which was a jumbo chocolate chip cookie with vanilla gelato and chocolate sauce on top. It wasn’t as amazing as the peanut butter pie, but it’s hard to go wrong with chocolate chip cookies and ice cream…

Overall, it was an extremely wonderful carb-filled meal that ended on a sweet touch.