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Restaurants & Bars 7

Oliveto Puglia dinner

Robert Lauriston | Jan 21, 2006 06:50 PM

Had an absolutely stellar meal last night.

- antipasti

Verdure a scapece: Marinated Artichokes, Cardoons, Leeks, and Fennel with Anchovy and Mint 13.00

Panzerotti: Fried Turnovers Stuffed with Sheep’s Milk ricotta and Herbs, Drizzled with Bitter Honey 14.00: actually a panzerotto, one big fried turnover.

Insalata di seppie e patate: Cuttlefish and New Potatoes with Scallions, Garlic, Parsley, and Lemon 13.00

First two were sweet and sour, great with prosecco, last made a nice transition to red. I've never seen seppie here, the chef said he gets them from a supplier friend in Greece.

- primi

Viermiceddi cu lu baccalà: Puglian-Style vermicelli with Salt Cod, Green Olives, and Bay Leaf 14.50

Cavatelli with ‘fagioli tondini’ Beans and Wild Mushrooms 15.50

Orecchiette with Broccoli Rabe, Garlic, Anchovy, and Hot Pepper 14.50

The vermiceddi made a good transition from the cuttlefish. The owner brought out the scary brass cutter they used to cut the noodles.

The cavatelli and orecchiete are made from the same dough, a mix of all-purpose and 10% whole-wheat flour and water. Super al dente, great texture and flavor. Best I've had in this country, best cavatelli I've had ever.

-secondi

Grano with Braised Jones Farm Rabbit, Wild Mushrooms, and Rosemary 18.50

Involtini of Yellowfin Tuna, Blood Orange, Breadcrumbs, Currants, and Pine Nuts 28.00: actually one big involtino

Perfect ligher entrees after all that pasta. The grano was a gratin of cooked farro tossed with the other ingredients and topped with olive-oil-soaked bread crumbs. The involtino was a piece of pork pounded very thin and wrapped around a breadcrumb and I forgot to ask what filling.

- dolci

Warm Ricotta Fritters 6.00

Custard and Pear Jam torta 8.50

Super-light fritters, very delicate. The torta was a sort of not very tall layer cake but the texture of the cake was quite firm, light and delicate, not at all what I'd expected.

- vini

They had a special wine list with half a dozen interesting Pugliese reds by the glass or quarto (250ml carafe). Tried an Accademia dei Racemi Susmaniello, a Mottura negroamaro, and a 97 Patriglione.

Overall just a stellar meal. Some of the dishes are sure to show up on the regular menus.

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