This morning I ate a Kashi Honey Almond Flax bar for breakfast on the Long Island Rail Road:
We went into Manhattan to see "West Side Story," and we had a 4:55pm reservation at Becco for dinner. Seeing this, and knowing that I would want to spend most of my days' calories eating beautiful pasta dishes, I ate an Au Bon Pain cheese stick and mini Cherry Pie Larabar for "lunch" during the intermission:
The show was FANTASTIC! It also helped that being inside allowed us to escape the buckets of rain! I took this from under the crowded awning:
Once the show ended, we leapt through puddles for three or so blocks until we arrived on Restaurant Row. Becco has to be my all-time favorite Italian restaurant. The restaurant has a special out-of-Manhattan feel and with an open kitchen and the Executive Chef calling out orders himself, you know that you will get nothing less than top quality food. The space is painted with warm colors, includes a brick wall and hosts servers clad in jeans and button-down shirts. As you walk through the restaurant you will see people of all ages dining together and conversing over a bottle of wine (or three!) and silver platters of the day's pasta dishes circling about.
As an appetizer we (my mom, her friend Robin and myself) ordered fresh Burrata which is mozzarella with a mozzarella and cream interior. I have never had a smoother cheese in my life. It was served on a piece of toasted bread with broccoli rabe:
The restaurant is known for its Sinfonia Di Pasta, which features three fresh pasta preparations daily. The Sinfonia includes unlimited pasta with your choice of a Caesar salad or an Antipasto Misto. Today's pastas were mushroom ravioli, linguini with clams and farfalle with basil and marinara. I ordered the Antipasto Misto with my Sinfonia which included monkfish (left) and octopus with potatoes and red onion (right):
This also came with an antipasto platter. My favorite part were the string beans which were drizzled in a horseradish sauce:
Before our dinner arrived, Executive Chef William Gallagher sent us over a platter of prosciutto with mozzarella which was topped with pignoli nuts and pesto. My mom knows Chef Gallagher because his children went to the high school she is an Administrator at and she originally found out about Becco through them! After what was now my third course, the pastas came:
Fresh and flavorful; the perfect pasta course.
After our plates were cleared the Floor Manager, Angelo Ruggiero, came to our table to let us know that Chef Gallagher would be sending over dessert. He sent out not one but nine different samplings paired with three glasses of sparkling dessert wine:
Raspberry, mango and muscat-pear (I think!) sorbets.
(Clockwise from left) chocolate mousse cake, bread pudding, ricotta cheesecake (the BEST) and panna cotta.
The most unbelievable strawberry ice cream I have ever tasted!
Zabaglione with strawberries and blueberries.
If the desserts were not enough, Chef Gallagher came over to our table to see how we liked everything. I was floored that he stopped to say hello on a busy Saturday night and when I told him how much I loved the desserts he said, "Well, everything is fresh!" I told him that I had been snapping pictures all evening for my blog after which he took a photo with us:
Not only does he create intriguing, "fresh" dishes, but he is also a really nice guy! After our three-hour meal I was full, happy and wondering what I would order at my next Becco experience!