Maialino is just off Gramercy Park, a private park in NYC. If you own one of the town houses surrounding the park, you then have a key to the gate. In my next life, I'm going to make enough money to own a place on Gramercy Park.
Maialino. Italian. Not a lot of red sauce. Lots of pork. They use all the parts.
When I sat down, my server brought me the menu and wine list. I took a brief look at the menu and ordered a drink. When my server came back, I told her that I have been trying to get a reservation here for some time. I was excited to be here, and was prepared to order lots of food. I then asked what were her favorite items. They lined up well with things that caught my eye. I decided not to order the items that are prepared at other restaurants, but ordered more unusual items. What did I eat?
They were featuring suckling pig. My starter was grilled suckling pig face. They took a suckling pig head, split it into two, took the brains out (thank you), lightly breaded and grilled the face. It was delicious, crispy, unctuous. The server suggested that I not forget to flip Porky over to get the tongue and ear. I had this with some weird Italian white wine that was quite acid, a good match to the fat.
Next, I had a bolognese sauce made the rabbit legs, some tomato, and some green olives. It was served with a tubular pasta. I normally avoid things, other than martinis, served with olives. But the olives used in this dish were great. Not too salty, but savory. I had this with an Italian red that was Pinot noir-like.
My last plate was three rib lamb chops. Grilled with spring onions and sun-chokes. I've never had better lamb chops. Washed down with a Sangiovese.
My server was exceptional. With advancing age, I cannot remember her name (Katherine, Charlotte)? I'll always think of her as the Armenian Princess. Her knowledge of the menu and wine pairings was great. She was fun, too.
A decaf espresso, and back to the hotel. What a wonderful meal.