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Cioppino in the Midtown area

annie23 Oct 17, 2009 08:20 PM

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

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    RCC RE: annie23 Oct 17, 2009 08:58 PM

    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
      ChiefHDB RE: RCC Oct 17, 2009 09:45 PM

      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
        cimui RE: ChiefHDB Oct 17, 2009 10:52 PM

        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. Cheese Boy RE: annie23 Oct 17, 2009 11:58 PM

      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
        RCC RE: Cheese Boy Oct 18, 2009 01:26 PM

        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. s
        small h RE: annie23 Oct 18, 2009 05:44 AM

        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.


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          annie23 RE: annie23 Oct 18, 2009 10:57 AM

          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
            fishermb RE: annie23 Oct 18, 2009 03:22 PM

            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. j
            JMJD RE: annie23 Oct 18, 2009 07:36 PM

            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.

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              uwsgrazer RE: annie23 Oct 19, 2009 08:04 PM

              It's on Compass' fall prix fixe menu. I debated between the cioppino and the brisket at dinner tonight. I opted for the brisket in the end, but another in my party ordered the cioppino. He said it was "okay". I enjoyed my brisket and overall thought the prix fixe was pretty good. Not sure I will return any time soon on my own but the restaurant worked out pretty well for a get-together with several friends - enough menu variety, pleasant service and comfortable and reasonably quiet surroundings. The place was empty, though (obviously contributed to the quiet conditions). I know it's Monday night but with probably at most 20% occupancy I would think they would have to fill the tables much better on other nights to survive.


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