Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Restaurants: Perbacco, Manhattan

Manhattan is full of surprises. One of the nicest surprises is Perbacco. This tiny restaurant & wine bar (Enoteca e Cucina) in Manhattan`s East Village (234 East 4th Street, between Ave A and B) is a hidden gem. They serve Italian cuisine on a high level. http://www.perbacconyc.com/

Usually I prefer fish, but the menu allured me to try something else, the "Pancia di Maiale, Castagne e Formaggio Fritto". Its honey glazed pork belly served with chestnuts purée, grilled mushrooms, roasted shallots, dry porcini and garlic crusted deep fried Bitto cheese. I was well rewarded. I adored the slightly sweet taste of the crispy pork in combination with the other ingredients which fit quite well.

My girlfriend enjoyed the "Salmone Poché con Porcini", which was poached large salmon slice, cauliflower sauce, seared with porcini mushrooms and endive.

The Appetizers were also delicate. I choose the "Roast Tuna", it was thinly sliced seared fresh tuna loin over sautéed endive served with hot aromatic olive oil. My girlfriend voted for the speciality of the day, called "Parmigiana di Melanze". She got eggplant with a sauce of whipped up buffalo mozzarella.

The meal was perfected by the dessert, called "Strudel". We got "puff pastry cylinder filled with white chocolate, apple and cinnamon mousse, toasted walnuts and pine nuts gelato, golden raisin and rum sauce... with a liquid strudel shot".  One reason more to go back.

The long list of wines was also impressive. Besides the list of wines by the glass and the carafes there was a large assortment of bottles. The wine menu displays the geographical structure of Italy. The bottled wines are sorted according the regions of the Italian boot: north, middle & south plus the islands. My girlfriend choose a bottle a Chianti Classico from Toscana, a good choice.

There was just one negative point. We arrived on a cold winter evening and were seated next to the wall. My girlfriend was placed almost on top of the radiator. The seat was a bit too hot for her taste. Next time when we visit in Winter we will choose a place not too near to the heating.

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