Four of us had dinner in this new restaurant within the former Lombardy hotel bar space. The room drips with elegance: Corinthian columns, fireplace, high ceilings, and is hung with cool contemporary art..overall look is striking. Waiter was very attentive with no attutude; rest of the service was a little scattershot but they tried very hard. Chef Sandro Fioritti??) makes the rounds and a managerial type is aalways vigilant..they seem to be trying hard to make a go of this place. Surprisingly even after some good press, the room was only about half full on a Saturday night.
Here are brief descriptions of our dishes: Portions are all quite large.
Plate of lightly fried broccolli, zucchini, cauliflower.
Burrata with cherry tomatoes. Large disc of this very creamy mozzarella variation, surrounded by lightly dressed grape tomatoes. We all liked it very much. Should improve when better local tomatoes come into season.
Fried ricotta. Four large logs of ricotta breaded and fried, set stop a bed of excellent tomato sauce. Hearty dish, no surprises but still very good, especially the sauce.
Porcini and truffle salad. A pile of fresh porcini topped with small amount of shaved black truffle and lots of shards of Parmesan. Very little dressing so a bit dry. Something was lacking here as compared with similar salads I have eaten in Tuscany in the fall. Could it be the mushrooms (which tasted a little bland)?
Primi: (They will serve half orders of pasta)
Spaghetti with lemon. Listed under Sandro's specialties, this was a yummy concoction of butter, cream, lemon juice and lemon rind. Simple but scrumptious.
Ravioli of ricci and scallops. Having eaten this dish almost every day on our recent trip to Sicily, I was disappointed that this version was a little short of the unique roe-ish flavor of the ricci and tasted more strongly of scallops. But this was an unfair comparison on my part, I suppose, after all that Sicilian ricci. Pasta was homemade and with a great, almost chewy consistency....excellent. Good sauce. Well-sized portion. Another of the chef's specials.
Spinach and cheese ravioli. Terrific!! Great tomato sauce, too.
Meatballs. Light, tasty, great tomato sauce. We all loved them. Again, good sized portion.
Dover sole. Simple preparation, served with a bed of spinach, this fish failed to WOW me as other versions have done in the past. But still pretty good.
Apple cake. Wonderful, served with vanilla ice cream. Chef's specialty, according to the menu.
Ice cream sampler. Includes olive oil ice cream, upon request. One hazlenut, one yummy chocolate; all very good.
Price for four of us, with three mini-carafes of house pinot grigio; one vodka-based cocktail, came to $220 before tip but after tax. Several of the dishes were shared betwwen us. Not bad!!
All in all: a good addition to the midtown dining scene with refreshingly few pretensions. Very comfy place. I would go back; next time would try the meat-based pasta dishes.
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