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Oct 17, 2009 08:20 PM

Cioppino in the Midtown area

Seeking reccomendations for excellent Cioppino. Prefer the midtown area but not opposed to leaving the area. Thanks in advance.

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  1. I've not seen this in any restaurant here in Manhattan. As far as I know, this is an exclusive Bay Area dish ,,. it was invented there and never made it out of there.

    2 Replies
    1. re: RCC

      There's a green chile cioppino on the menu at mesa grill. Not very authentic, but its the only one I know of.

      1. re: ChiefHDB

        It's also served at another Bobby Flay' restaurant, Bar Americain. I've never tried it, though, and don't know whether it's any good.

    2. Cioppino on this side of the US is undiscovered and unheard of. Actually, that's not completely true because one can say that Cioppino goes by another name here -- zuppa di pesce and/or bouillabaisse. For the most part these are all very comparable to each other.

      IIRC, Cioppino got its name from the words "chip in". After a day of fishing, the fisherman returned to the docks with their catch and were expected to "chip in" to the communal dinner being prepared there for all of them to eat. Depending on what one wanted to part with, and what one had fished for, the fisherman would "chip in" shellfish, fin fish, or crustaceans. This combination of various seafoods came to be known as Cioppino because the Italians couldn't pronounce "chip in" all that well. They called it Cioppino (supposedly). ; - )

      1 Reply
      1. re: Cheese Boy

        From an online source -

        "It was developed in the late 1800s by Italian fishermen who settled in the North Beach section of San Francisco.[2] Originally it was made on the boats while out at sea and later became a staple as Italian restaurants proliferated in San Francisco. The name comes from ciuppin, a word in the Ligurian dialect of the port city of Genoa, meaning "to chop" or "chopped" which described the process of making the stew by chopping up various leftovers of the days catch."

      2. Menupages' find-a-food search shows 26 results for cioppino. I've never had it at any of these restaurants, but I've been to Maria Pia and Osteria Gelsi and wouldn't hesitate to recommend either. I've also been to BLT Fish (the downstairs part), City Crab and Mesa Grill - those I would not recommend.

        1. Thank you for your responses. I have only eaten it in the Bay area and it truly is a favorite of mine. However, since New York City has many diverse choices I was in hope of finding it there. I never cease to be amazed at all I can learn on Chowhound. Again, thanks for your posts. I will definitely try your suggestions.

          1 Reply
          1. re: annie23

            Not that it's going to be as authentic/great as in a restaurant, but you can actually buy Cioppino from Trader Joe's, it's frozen in a bag, heat in a pot and it's all there, not bad for a couple bucks.

          2. Pearl Oyster Bar has something along the lines of Cioppino -- I can't remember what they called it, just that we were tempted to order it because it looked so good. I'd go there over any other place, even if it's not precisely a cioppino -- pseudo-cioppiono at Pearl is probably better than "real" cioppino at ohter restaurants.