Best Italian Restaurant - 2006
Readers' Choice: Delfina
There's a new Italian kid in town, and it's adorable. This sleek yet comfy storefront not only offers interesting starters (daily soups, including such novelties as corn swirled with basil purée and studded with clams and a purée of lentils enriched with prawns and foie gras; black squid ink risotto with scallops; beef carpaccio with arugula and slivered Parmigiano) and excellent pastas (house-made pappardelle with boar ragu and artichokes, gnocchi caprese), but also avoids the frequent pitfall of Italian places high and low: Its main courses are as good as what comes before. The classic pollo al mattone (chicken flattened and cooked under a brick) is unusually succulent and juicy; meat dishes include a textbook osso buco, a thick and pricey veal chop, and delicate veal scallopine served with a creamy risotto bianco and spinach Florentine. The kitchen is equally adept with fish dishes, whether a simple roasted Italian halibut atop Sicilian couscous or a fancy, multi-item cioppino, Genovese style. And last but not least: There's a bargain $25 three-course prix fixe, with several choices per course, offered from 5 to 6 nightly.