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May 11, 2012 02:18 PM

Babbo dish recommendations please (researched)!!

Hello, 6 of us are planning to go to Babbo for dinner. Based on the enormous amount of information that was available here, I've narrowed it down and was hoping to get some advice on the same. From what I've read the general advice seems to be 6 apps, 6 pastas, 3 entrees and desserts. We'd like to share and try multiple things but some dishes seem to be extremely popular so for those I have doubled the portions. Are there any others where the tiny portion sizes would warrant additional portions? I was not able to figure out 6 apps that I liked so I have 4 portions of apps and 8 portions of pasta. Is that OK?

Thanks a lot everyone!

Pig's foot milanese (Is this the same as crispy pig's foot?) - 2 portions
Lamb's tongue vinaigrette with three minute egg - Very vinegary (Even though the reviews were mixed)
Grilled octopus (Even though the reviews were mixed)

Beef cheek ravioli - 2 portions
Goose liver ravioli - Rich, bold, sweet (Reduced balsamic) - 2 portions
Squid ink pasta with rock shrimp and calabrese
Chianti stained pappardelle with wild boar ragu pasta
Papperdelle bolognese
Goat cheese tortellini

Pork chop
Fennel Dusted Sweetbreads

Seasonal fruit Crostata
Maple mascarpone cheesecake
Gelato and sorbet assortment
Chocolate hazelnut cake
Pistachio and chocolate semi freddo


Mint Love Letters
Lamb's brain francobolli
Gnocchi with oxtail
Pumpkin lune with sage and amarettis pasta
Fettucine with pancetta pasta
Garganelli with funghi trifolati
Saffron panna cotta
Soft shell crabs (Special)
Lamb chops

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  1. This is a great list. My only sub would be lamb's brain francobolli for the bolognese. The bolognese is decent but it's such a common dish, whereas you wonl't find lamb's brain francobolli anywhere else in the city.

    The last time I was there they let us order a la carte portions from their tasting menu (not all of the tasting menu dishes appear on the regular menu), so that's something to keep in mind as well.

    The pig's foot milanese is the same as crispy pig's foot, deboned.

    3 Replies
    1. re: fm1963

      This is what I like about Chowhound! View points from fellow foodies can be soooo diverse!! Singapore chowhounder and I had a chowmeet a while back and tried almost all the aforementioned dishes. Though most of the dishes were OK, stand outs were far and few!! In fact, the only standout was the Bolognese!!
      Rather than making recommendations on 'to-have' dishes, I would like to do the reverse and suggest dishes to leave out!
      IMO, the sweetbread is a pass since its mushy and not crispy. the octopus is hit and miss since part of ours was great but part was way over-charred! Lamb's tongue was not enjoyable at all. Beef cheek ravioli was bland. Goose liver ravioli was OK but Batali's Las Vegas outpost did a much better job!! ???????

      1. re: Charles Yu

        I would leave the octopus on the list. When I tried it, it was very good and probably my favorite dish of the night. It did have a distinctive char to it, so you need to like that, but I could see how it could be possible to go overboard if the person doing the cooking isn't careful. Regardless, I'd think the chances of you getting a good one are high enough that it's definitely worth it to have at least one order to share.

        The boar head ragu is pretty good, but I found it kind of boring. I understand that some people love it, so I would probably throw one order in as you already have planned, but don't shed too many tears if you decide to bump it for something a little more unusual.

      2. re: fm1963

        Thanks! I already have 4 portions of ravioli (the beef cheek and the goose liver) so I thought another ravioli dish would be a little too much. Also, when I read about the lamb's brain francobolli, it seemed like the brain was more for the texture and the ricotta in the filling was what you tasted. If the brain was a little more assertive in the dish, I would definitely have had it on my list.

      3. We went to Babbo twice on our trip, each time ordering 4 dishes (4 pastas the first time, 3 pastas and one segundi the second time) which the kitchen split for us. We also had the gelato/sorbeto sampler the first time (disappointing...the best one was olive oil gelato).

        Garganelli with funghi trifolati - our favorite! We had this both times we went. I'd add it.

        Beef cheek ravioli - 2 portions - very good.
        Goose liver ravioli - Rich, bold, sweet (Reduced balsamic) - 2 portions - very tasty, but very rich.
        Mint Love Letters - I didn't care for this one at all.
        Gelato and sorbet assortment - very disappointing
        Soft shell crabs (Special) - the crab was nice, but I didn't like the overwhelming watercress and pesto that accompanied it.

        1 Reply
        1. re: akq

          I love their tripe appetizer and would highly recommend you add that to the list.

          For me and my fiance - tripe, lambs tongue, beef cheek or goose liver ravioli then the pork chop. A nice bottle of wine tops it all off. Have fun :)

        2. Switch out the papardelle for the veal shank!

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