Sfoglia/Tutto Sfoglia Update
- MMRuth Jun 12, 2009 02:23 PM
Well, I keep meaning to post about a recent meal at Sfoglia, and since I had lunch there yesterday, now I have two to report on, which I will do, below. However, to me, the more interesting "news" is the opening of Tutto Sfoglia several weeks ago. It is a little market right next to the restaurant, in the front of the space into which the restaurant itself has been expanded. Even though I've walked by there numerous times since the market opened, I never realized that there was a market there. Anyway - they sell their fabulous bread - I bought some today and, though it was humid and the crust was not so crusty, it's still some of the best bread around in my opinion. I also bought a small sandwich with lettuce, prosciutto and fontina, on a roll that I believe was made with the same dough as the bread. I didn't check the prices of the items, but the two were $14.00. The market also sells fresh pasta, condiments (both ones they make in house, as well as some jarred ones), olives, various Pelligrino drinks, olive oils and vinegars, some dried pastas, cookies etc. baked in house. My impression is that they plan to expand kinds of items available for sale. I just wish their sign made it more clear that there is a market there. I believe they are open Tues - Sat, 9:00 until 5:00 or 5:30.
On to Sfoglia. I had lunch there with another hound. She started with a delectable English pea soup with crisp duck prosciutto and mascarpone (14) I had fave e pecorino Toscano (12), which were nicely dressed and had some toasted walnuts on the plate. We both had pasta - she the pappardelle alla Bolognese (18), which I have had several times now and love, and I had the linguine alla Genovese, salsa verde (18), which had shredded veal along with the salsa verde. I thought that the pastas were perfectly cooked, and the sauces well seasoned. My friend had iceberg lettuce, creamy gorgonzola, panegrattugiata (7) after her pasta, though couldn't eat much of either it or her pasta after the very rich soup. I had a bite of the salad, and the dressing was really lovely. We were brought both olives and that marvelous bread at the beginning of the meal - the latter right out of the oven with a crust so crunchy and perfectly salty, with just a marvelous not too chewy "inside". We were too full for dessert, but had tea and espresso instead. I had two glasses of wine, and my friend a glass of juice. I think the check was about $100 before tip.
Lunch at Sfoglia with husband and in-laws, the weekend after opening day at the new Yankee Stadium, whenever that was.
So, my Dominican in-laws tend not to stray much south of the St. Regis, or north of Daniel's, so we decided to invite them to come up our way for Saturday lunch. In a nutshell - they absolutely loved Sfoglia, and couldn't believe that such good chow (not their word) could be found "up there" and how good the prices were, considering the quality of the food.
We started with the antipasti, and, unfortunately, I can't remember the details of what was on the platter, but it was a combination of cured meats and cheeses. I also ordered a vitello tonnato dish that, while I liked it, seemed to have more pesto on it than tonnato sauce.
I had the bolognese referred to above, and my in-laws shared the same dish with one another. I don't remember now which pasta dish my husband had, as it's not now on the menu, but I believe it was a gnocchi dish, which he thought was fabulous.
For dessert, we got the Milk Chocolate, Espresso and Hazelnut Semifreddo and the
Handmade Sfoglia Cookie Plate. While the former was very good, the latter was really quite impressive. There must have been at least ten kinds of cookies on the plate, and despite our eating quite a few of them, I brought quite a few home with me as well. I'm hoping that these will soon be available in the market.
We had a bottle of Piemont '04 Cortese Amphore Tenuta Grillo (78) that we very much enjoyed.
Service at both meals was good overall, though at bit inattentive at times, particularly so for those who usually eat at Daniel, Le Cirque, etc.!
I have now had two meals in three months at Sfoglia and I just don't get all the ado nor does my S/O.
The first time I had the mixed apps and chicken. I thought it was just okay.
We went again last night and were a party of four.
We had fava bean toscana, ragu Bolognese, some sort of creamy, bland gnocchi, home made Italian sausage and a made to order fruit tart and cassata for desert. The only thing outstanding is the bread, which is just as good at Etats Unis. The ragu was made with lamb??!!, My sausages were nothing special and had some unnessary sweet stuff with them, an asparagus side was almost lousy. No one ate it. The tart was so-so. The cassata was good.
For those prices, go to Locanda Verde. Pay less, eat much better. This was our last time.
By the way, and now I'm shilling, I had a fabulous appetizer of fava bean puree in a puddle of olive oil and the lightest, warm, home made pita at Square Meal recently. Yum.
To answer your posts, MMRuth, no the ragu was billed as Bolognese. Etats Unis used to be my favorite restaurant in NYC for many years until about five years ago. It started going down hill and then Tom Rapp, the owner sold it. It no longer has that specialness. It still has one of my favorite deserts. The sticky date pudding. Worth going out of the way for.
And as I now remember, it was our third forgettable meal at Sfoglia. The first was right after it opened. I find it neither authentic Italian, nor very good, and quite pricey and a bit pretentious.
Locanda Verde is great, early on a quiet night.
I ate there at the end of the month (October 2009), and the one dish I had (for lunch) turned out to be unpleasant. It was an autumn salad of celery, figs, gorgonzola, hazelnuts in a balsamic dressing. Alas, the celery was shaved into long ribbons, which were hard to chew and thus had the tendency to get stuck in the throat. I really had to be careful chewing and swallowing (they were impossible to cut up first). Figs were good, but the gorgonzola, nuts and vinegar had just traveled too far from source to plate.
1402 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10128