My wife and I have walked by this place many times. So when I saw a Groupon that offered $25 for $50 worth of food, I jumped on it. Not only that, but I also used a coupon code on top of the deal, so it was technically even cheaper by at least $5.
Our first appetizer was a fennel, endive and pancetta salad. It wasn’t really dressed with anything. Still tasty, but I think some added citrus would have made it better – orange in particular.
For our second appetizer we had the roasted calamari and mushrooms. This was really delicious, and both this and the previous app were large portion sizes. With the squid roasted instead of sautéed or fried, it made a big difference in the depth of flavor. That great roasted garlic was present without being too overpowering, and the rings of calamari were perfectly cooked. They had a good, tender snap to them without any chewiness whatsoever. The mushrooms were porcini and portobello, lightly cooked off with butter. The addition of lemon really made this dish pop with brightness.
Our first pasta was a pappardelle with mushrooms in garlic and olive oil. This was very similar to the app above, with porcini and portobello mushrooms, but here the sauce was olive oil instead of butter and lemon. I actually thought the app had a more robust flavor. The pasta was perfectly cooked, however.
Our second pasta was supposed to be strozzopreti (long, thinner cavatelli shape) but we were served cavatelli. This came with braised wild boar. It was delicious; heavy, but super flavorful. I wonder if this cavatelli was truly made in-house, as the menu suggested… They were all very uniform, and I noticed the tell-tale doughy, pillowy one that often shows up in quantities of one or two per pack of the store-bought cavatelli that my mom always used. Not a big deal, still delicious, and my favorite kind of pasta to boot… but it could just be that the restaurant ran out of strozzopreti and decided to run over to the nearby grocery story for some substitute cavatelli or something.
Anyway, we ate every last bite of these fucking things. Everything was delicious, so we will probably be back to try some more stuff.
654 9th Ave.
New York, NY 10036