It’s one of those restaurants — cash only and no reservations.
I had expected a brutal wait for a table at Bar Pitti on a Friday night during a very busy time of night when most New Yorkers are just starting to get hungry. But to my surprise my boyfriend and I only waited 20 minutes for our table! It was luckily the last beautiful evening before the weather went back to being chilly — so the restaurant had indoor and outdoor seating available. We luckily got the best of both worlds and sat technically inside but right in front where the walls/windows were opened.
While waiting for a table, those waiting will stand outside on the sidewalk (which isn’t a big deal if the weather is nice, but if it was the middle of winter I can only imagine how upset I would be being both cold and hungry).
So we got a fabulous table and quickly began to eye down the menu to pick out what we wanted to order. The wait staff is fairly pushy and it’s obvious that they are running around trying to serve a jam-packed restaurant but they are rather sort and quick to the point. But who can be mad at a waiter who is very kind yet talks insanely fast?
First up was our appetizers and of course I had to order the caprese salad with fresh bufala mozzarella which came out beautifully seasoned with some salt and pepper and was exceptionally creamy and fluffy. I love a good bufala mozzarella but my boyfriend and I agreed that we loved Da Silvano’s unbelievable burrata. (Da Silvano is Bar Pitti’s sister restaurant and they are located right next to each other.) Although we did dig into our caprese and garlic bread was even served to the table (I’m not sure if it was part of the order or complimentary) but it was a perfect way to scoop up some bufala mozzarella and tomatoes. Besides being convenient it also added so much flavor to the cheese! Who would ever say “no” to garlic?
My boyfriend didn’t think that the caprese salad was enough to order so he wanted to snag one another item off of the specials menu (Note: the restaurant changes their specials menu daily based off of what is fresh). He picked the asparagus and veal dish. Hmmm, okay, this was a rather strange plate. The food didn’t taste bad in any way whatsoever but it was so damn odd. First of all, it’s a cold plate. Second, the asparagus is pureed. And third, you can’t see the veal, but the veal was literally just a thin layer of meat that was sliced and put on the plate before the asparagus puree was poured on top. Again, it didn’t taste bad, but the dish was just very unusual.
Next came our main courses. We both ordered off of the specials menu — I picked the spinach ravioli in a sage and butter sauce. This was such a phenomenal pick because after filling up on appetizers I desperately needed a light entree. I am such a sage lover. And I couldn’t help but laugh with my boyfriend over the fact that we were literally eating the same exact dinner that I had made him for the first meal I cooked for him. Aww, so sweet! (I made him a fresh caprese salad with a spinach ravioli in a butter and sage sauce — super easy to make at home!) But the chef at Bar Pitti did a great job infusing the fantastic flavor of sage into the butter. And I loved that there was plenty of butter sauce to scoop up from the plate onto the ravioli!
My boyfriend ordered a farfalle with salmon and asparagus in a pink sauce. I am not a fan of salmon when it’s cooked — I love love love it raw but forget cooking it and feeding it to me. Ick! But I surprisingly enjoyed this farfalle dish! Full of flavor and not an overwhelming taste of salmon, I really enjoyed all of the different tastes that were cooked into this dish. I was disappointed about one thing though — the farfalle aka bowtie pasta was wayyy over cooked. I’m such a typical Al Dente type of girl that loves her pasta just cooked enough that there is a slight firmness to the pasta. The texture of this pasta reminded me of the way my macaroni turned out the first time when I cooked it in the microwave back in college. Luckily the taste of the pasta was no where near Easy Mac!
Last but not least was our dessert. I have been on such a sorbet kick lately so I couldn’t help but order a serving of tangerine sorbet. (I think of my new obsession of sorbet is just a way for me to do research. My friend Brittany and her friend Gina recently gave me a KitchenAid ice cream maker as a thank you for letting them stay in my apartment for a long weekend. How nice is that! So now I have been learning all about what flavors taste great in ice cream and sorbet!) The tangerine sorbet was loaded with flavor and reminded me of my gelato experiences I had on my recent trip to Italy. The presentation was also fantastic — the sorbet was stuffed back into a tangerine! (My boyfriend and I were actually debating this… I thought that the tangerine looked like an orange, he thinks it looks like a tangerine. Please, someone agree with me on this that a tangerine looks exactly like an orange! )
And then my boyfriend ordered the tiramisu which tasted fantastic! I laughed at him though because this tiramisu tastes exactly like coffee/espresso and my boyfriend hates coffee (so I find it odd that he enjoyed this dessert!) Perfectly rich, and creamy this tiramisu really hits the spot for someone looking for both a sweet and savory dessert.
So besides having over cooked farfalle I am going to rate this restaurant a 9 out of 10. It really was a great experience and I was even able to speak the few words of Italian that I know. (I could easily order double of anything and I have fantastic manners saying please and thank you, and I know how to say “how do you say this in Italian?” So obviously I learned several new words as well.)
By the way, I do have to share with everyone something funny that happened at our dinner table. My boyfriend huffs and puffs whenever the food arrives because he can’t dig in right away. I always have to take a photo of our food first (of course, so I can share the pictures with all of my blog followers). But lately I’ve been noticing while I put my camera/phone away I manage to glance at my boyfriend who is snapping a few pictures himself…. Hmmmm, I think we might have a new food photographer!