Went back to focus on the cooked dishes (after a plate of guanciale, culatello, arista, coppa and salame milanese). The zucchini pesto risotto with almonds was summer in a bowl, the lasagna with beef/pork/bechamel sauce required a repeat order, the porchetta sandwich with hot peppers rivaled Sarah Jenkins' place on 7th Street, the chickpea bruschetta was wonderful and the pancetta leek tart was perfect.
We just finished lunch there with two CHs who'd been there previously. They each had the porchetta sandwich and shared some with us. It was so good. My husband and I shared the bostina, a spicy Tuscan spare rib, slow-cooked with tomatoes, rosemary and garlic. It was perfect and I started to wish we'd asked for them to be delivered in a different order thinking it couldn't get better. Well, it did. Next was the trippa alla Parmigiana, stewed honeycomb tripe with tomatoes and parmigiano. When we shared with one of our friends, she sighed and rolled her eyes in happiness. Okay, now I *know* that I wished we'd ordered in a different. But the final was the best of the three perfect dishes. Pancia, pork belly cooked in its own fat with Cicerchie beans, dandelion and crispy skin. These were small plates so it was easy and not crazy to share such richness. At that point was when we decided we needed a second bottle of pinot grigio, none of us needing to negotiate world peace or the like afterwards. Then we got a little cheese board, the three cheeses I can't remember the names of, two hard and one soft. With a little honey for one, a smear of grape chutney with one and again can't remember the third. THEN we had two plates of cookies that contained a couple of biscotti, a pignole cookie (can't remember the name of those), a tiny meringue and a couple of other things. This entirely meal was sumptuously, unctously (!!!) delicious. Lunch for four including tax and tip was under $200. So the aforementioned foods, two bottles of wine and an espresso. This is a restuarant that I don't hesitate to recommend to anyone.
283 Amsterdam Avenue, New York, NY 10023
re: c oliver
I'll go ahead and confess that I was one of the 'hounds. The cheeses were:
Pecorino Toscano, with Mostarda di Uva (which I bought a jar of)
Robiola with a slice of preserved fig (also Mostarda?)
Fiore di Sardegna with a local (NJ) chestnut honey.
This is the third time I've been in two weeks and I've just so enjoyed every dish that I've had - my husband loved the tripe last week, and so I recommended it today. I also keep coming home with things - I think their mortadella is excellent, and not too salty, which I sometimes find to be an issue. I've also been buying their pancetta in slab form, as it is so much easier to cut up that way - and it is spectacular.
Well I must have ordered all the wrong things then. Ordered the meat and cheese platters and the "truffled" meats special. They were all decent, nothing spectacular. But every cooked item I ordered was for the most part, insipid - the potato croquette particularly so.
The service was not good. Granted we came in after a concert at the Beacon Theater around 10:30. But the waiter was in such a rush to get out of there, it made for an unpleasant experience.