italian Archive

LA Eats: The Food Porn Edition

In-N-Out

I just came back from a 2 week time off in LA and it was FREAKING wonderful. Though it wasn’t all play. The first week I spent it with these guys (yes I was doing work) and the second week was a total tv on the couch time.

Besides eating burgers from In-N-Out and mom’s cooking, most of the meals I had were from places I have never been before. Luckily everything I ate during my 2 weeks in LA was mighty delicious.

Check out what I ate after the jump…
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Osteria il Paiolo

Osteria il Paiolo

It’s always great when you learn something new, especially when you’re eating some fabulous tasting food. Couple weeks ago I had a grand meal at Osteria il Paiolo in Williamsburg with my friend Melissa. What I learned that night was how proper polenta is made, in a giant copper pot or a il Paiolo. In keeping with his family tradition, owner Alex Palumbo makes sure to make his polenta in a il Paiolo. Unlike most polenta I had, this was extremely creamy yet there was no dairy added to it whatsoever.

Osteria il Paiolo is one of the few restaurants in Williamsburg to have tables on the sidewalk. Go enjoy your summer nights with a glass of wine and some fantastic polenta.

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Scarpetta and the $24 Spaghetti

The first time I ever heard about Scarpetta was a mention of its signature dish: a $24 plate of spaghetti. Nothing particularly fancy; there are no truffles, no imported platinum serving dish… Just (allegedly) the best plate of spaghetti with tomato sauce you’ve ever tasted. In thinking about my visit to Scarpetta with my friends Jeff & Eva, I knew I just couldn’t bring myself to actually spend $24 on spaghetti. Then my friend Melissa told me she thought the spaghetti was absolutely worth it — and I still couldn’t imagine ordering it. Then I had what I deemed to be a good idea, “and such ideas are not three a penny.”* My idea was this: we could order the spaghetti as an appetizer, and all partake of this amazing dish for a mere $8 per person.

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Piccoli Trattoria In Park Slope

Homemade pappardelle with short rib ragu

When Piccoli opened in Windsor Terrace, I really wanted to go try it. They specialize in risotto and I do love a good plate of tasty risotto. Though, situated next to Bene Pizza, it was only a to-go spot. I still haven’t been to it yet but recently they opened a sit down restaurant in Park Slope. I wasn’t in a hurry to go try it but then a friend wanted to have dinner there so I went.

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Rucola & Brucie: Italian in Cobble Hill

I know, it’s been a while since I posted. I’ve even gotten complaints from regular readers about it, and rightly so. If you remember, in September I had a week off of work and I used the time to visit all of the restaurants I’ve been meaning to go to. Two of those restaurants were Rucola and Brucie, both in Cobble Hill. I had originally planned to do them on separate days, but plans changed and I ended up eating at both on the same day. First up was Rucola, for lunch. I started with the appetizer pizza of the day, which was a marghertia. Now when I hear margherita, I think crust, sauce, mozzarella, and a garnish of olive oil and fresh basil. This was clearly no margherita — no mozz, instead it was sprinkled with what I think was pecorino, and topped with olives. Despite the misnomer the pizza was actually quite good, nicely salty and fresh tasting.

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Lunch at Torrisi Italian Specialties

There’s been a lot of praise heaped upon Torrisi Italian Specialties, and of course that’s made me curious. Could it really live up to the hype? The dinner service is not for me, since they serve plenty of meat and don’t make substitutions, but lunch is another matter. I met up with Donny and our friend Phaedra for lunch a few weeks ago, and I’m happy to say that the food really does deserve the praise. Torrisi is set up like an old-school Italian-American deli, though with premium ingredients and higher prices, and it’s in the heart of Little Italy. We managed to snag a table, and then the waitress told us that we had to order our food at the counter and she’d bring it to us. It was a little confusing, but we managed to get our food in short order. The eggplant parm was one of the best I’ve ever tasted (though to be honest I expected it to be a sandwich rather than a platter). The thinly sliced eggplant all but melted in my mouth, and the sauce was wonderfully savory. I also enjoyed the side of golden beets that I ordered. Donny and Phaedra were equally enamored of their sandwiches and sides. I can’t wait to go back and try their potato & egg sandwich. As far as I’m concerned, Torrisi lives up to the hype.

Torrisi Italian Specialties — 250 Mulberry St

Brucie

Brucie
My friend Steph and I are still wondering is it Brucie like Bru-sie or Brucie like Bru-chi. Though no matter how we pronounce the newly opened Italian restaurant’s name, we are totally in love with it. Unlike the more exciting Smith St, Court St is pretty damn boring and quiet. So when Brucie opened…eh….a month ago?!….I had no idea. The past tenant was Cube 63 sushi, a pretty decent sushi joint that I went only 2 times since I moved into the neighborhood. Then when I found out it had closed I felt indifferent about it. Sadly the space sat vacant for about a year until I heard Brucie had moved in.

Out of curiosity I went online and found their website and their menu. When I spotted this “housemade tagliatelle with sweet corn, brussels sprouts, tomato butter and burrata ($14)” I knew I had to pay Brucie a visit. Though I didn’t actually go for dinner till 3 weeks later on a Thursday night.

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