Friday night I had planned on dining on pasta to begin my pasta culinary adventure, but fate had a different path for me. I got a call from a good foodie friend of mine who insisted I meet him at Salumeria Rosi, a small salumi shop and restaurant helmed by chef Cesare Casella.
The place is small and has some sort of unique artwork/scuplture on one of it's walls, which is both unique and festive, just like the food I was about to consume.
When dining with fellow foodies it is always a true culinary adventure, and I had not expected, but should have known, that we were about to consume most of the dishes on the menu! That's right, plate after plate of food started to arrive, and it was glorious!
We started with a plate of their salumi which consisted of parmacotto, prosciutto cotto, prosciutto arrosto, porchetta, arista, mortadella, pancetta. Basically, a lot of meat. But this was not your regular Italian meat, this was the freshest and best meats I have ever had. There was a juiciness to each slice that was delicious, and great to have with a nice glass of wine.
After this initial tasting of meat, the ongoing arrival of plates with small Italian bites started to arrive. Dishes such as Lasagna with a pork and beef ragu and bechamel sauce ($8), Costina ($6), a spicy Tuscan spare rib, slow-cooked with tomatoes, rosemary and garlic, Caponata ($5) a sweet and savory Sicilian eggplant relish, were all great!
There were some standouts and memorable dishes that I cannot stop thinking about too. My favorite dish of the night was the Risotto with zucchini and basil pesto ($8), it was delicious and vibrant, and the perfect Spring/Summer dish. I loved the addition of toasted almonds which gave a nice crunch to the dish.
A dish called Sette Fagioli ($6) which is a seven bean salad ended up being the best beans I have ever had in my life!
Pancia ($9), a pork belly cooked in its own fat with Ciccerchie beans, dandelion, and crispy skin was amazing and addictive!
The Insalata di Asparagi ($6), sliced asparagus, radishes, arugula, grated hard-cooked egg, and parmgiano, was another great seasonal dish that lingers in my mind.
Salumeria Rosi also has a great bowl of mixed olives that is wonderful!
Salumeria Rosi is a great place to go for a glass (or three) of wine and some amazing and festive small Italian bites. Be it a date, a night out with some foodie friends, or just on your own, Salumeria Rosi will make you smile, I still am!
283 Amsterdam Ave (bet. 73rd and 74th)
New York, NY 10023