Entrance and dining room
Risotto (with porcini), garganelli (with osso bucco), and roasted beets
The next night, we return, but instead of waiting for a table, we are guided to a sister restaurant, Laboratorio, 1/2 block away that has a similar menu with immediate seating. We select the same starters as the previous night, but follow them with two pastas: rigatoni with spicy grilled shrimp and pappardelle with slow-braised wild boar. We add a side of mashed potatoes and share a chocolate fondant to finish..
Side and desert
We try a new (to us) restaurant, Nizza, on 9th Avenue, between 44th and 45th. The feast starts with the house bread served with ricotta cheese and grilled octopus (with chick peas, red onions, peppers, and fennel), followed by Sunday pasta (bucatini with meat balls and Italian sausage) and home-made fusilli with broccoli rabe and spicy pork sausage. We'll be back to Nizza next time we're in New York!
Nizza interior, appetizer
Octopus, bucatini and fusilli
Our last night, we head over to another new (to us) location, Don Antonio Pizzaria on West 50th between 8th and 9th, specializing in Neapolitan pizza. We start with arancini (stuffed rice balls coated with bread crumbs and deep fried) and share two pizzas, one white (quatro fromaggi with buffalo mozzarella, gran cru pecorino, caciocavallo ragusano, parmigiano reggiano, and crescenza BelGioioso ) and one red (diavola with tomato sauce, mozzarella, sopressata, and basil). Another great meal!
White and red pizzas
Our first two lunches are at counters in Chelsea Market and Eataly. At the fish market in Chelsea Market, we have a grilled fish sandwich and fish sliders. At Eataly, we share a fresh-made mozzarella and a platter of assorted cheeses and charcuterie. After lunch at Eately, we then go window shopping through all the markets (and buy some stracchino cheese and speck to carry home for one of our favorite risottos).
Lunch at Chelsea Market
Lunch at Eataly
Window shopping in the market at Eataly
For our last lunch, we meet a friend from out of town who is passing through New York for holiday visits (and formerly lived in the city). She guides us to 44 & X (at the corner of 44th and 10th Avenue), another great find. We share a bottle of Prosecco and dine on a smoked salmon, sour cream, and chive omelet and roasted chicken quesadillas.
44 & X