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the sweet scoop
For one of the most autentico Italian experiences around, get your appetite ready and head to Il Buco Alimentari & Vineria. NoHo’s rustic market, salumeria, bakery, wine bar and restaurant is an extension of former chef Ignacio Mattos’s original Il Buco, located on adjacent Bond Street.
In the front Alimentari grocery section, you can purchase artisanal dry goods, cured meats, and freshly baked bread to enjoy at home. Or settle into the warm, cozy Vineria and restaurant to sample seasonal specialties featuring organic, local produce and proteins from eco-friendly farms—which chef Justin Smillie precisely crafts using traditional Italian methods. Varied individual and high communal tables invites sharing the love with friends—or making new ones. Belly up to a spot by the open kitchen for a front row view of the staff busily churning out delicacies.
While the atmosphere charms, the simple, straightforward cuisine is most likely to entice a repeat visit. Served with crusty, chewy Italian bread, the house-made ricotta is a must have starter. A pillow of soft curds garnished with sugar snap peas, toasted pine nuts, mint, granola and a swirl of honey offered an inviting sweet-savory sensation. Another knockout appetizer of Manila clams arrived resting in zesty roasted pepper and garlic broth, thick cubes of pancetta sprinkled throughout.
Vegetable contorni, charcuterie and fresh pastas, seafood and meats complete the menu. Try the delicate twirls of “busiate” pasta coated with almonds, anchovies, sun-ripened duana tomatoes and capers. For a heartier entrée, the signature spit-roasted short ribs presented large chunks of tender, peppery meat edged by darkened, chewy bark. They were both exceptional mains.
Offering breakfast, lunch and dinner, Il Buco Alimentari & Vineria is a solid choice for a romantic date night or breaking bread with a group. Make a reservation to guarantee a prompt seating—then prepare to mangia.
My review as published in the Clean Plates Manhattan 2013 Restaurant Guide Book (purchase it here) and on CleanPlates.com. Photo courtesy of LocalEats.com.
The stage is set for an electrifying evening event on Monday, March 26 at 7 pm. Join celebrated chef Scott Conant, of Scarpetta restaurants and Food Network fame, as he hosts a night of fine food and entertainment to benefit Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. Guests will savor three hours of soulful Italian cuisine (from antipasti to dessert and everything in between), free-flowing vino and spirits, a silent auction and cabaret-style theatrics from some of Broadway’s shining stars.
Performers include Bethany Moore of “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark,” Marty Thomas of “Wicked,” Tituss Burgess of “The Little Mermaid,” Renée Marino of “West Side Story,” critically acclaimed recording artist Kelly King, GLAAD Award winner Wilson Cruz, and many others.
Chefs Onstage was created by Scarpetta bartender and actor Beau Speer and his SpeerArts Productions. Play a leading role in supporting this incredible cause, while taking in dinner and a show at acclaimed hotspot Scarpetta, by purchasing tickets at SpeerArts.com — or act fast to take advantage of this TimeOut NY discount offer.
For more information about Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, click here.
Images courtesy of SlashFood.com and SpeerArts.com.