Pepolino Restaurant

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Pepolino Restaurant

The two men who opened this restaurant decided to give it the name of a herb, pepolino, which, they say on their website, grows in Toscana, where one of them is from. I never heard of this herb before.

Nevertheless, I had a lovely dinner with some girlfriends who took me to cool Tribeca for my birthday last week.

The restaurant is noisy but it serves good Italian food, with a pinch of arrogance. I started with some lightly fried zucchini flowers, which were delicious. Then I ordered the special Spaghetti with Leeks and Parmigiano. When a dish of SpaghettINI arrived, I  politely explained in Italian to the Italian hostess that I don’t really care for thin spaghetti; had I known it was SpaghettINI, I would not have ordered it. Then, one of the Italian owners, I guess, came to the table and said that those were indeed Spaghetti. No doubt about it, said he, this is the way De Cecco makes their Spaghetti. I said “impossible” (didn’t add: you don’t know who I am). We discussed this a little longer; then, he said “I’ll show you the box”. When he returned without a box, he asked me if I wanted something else and quick to make (by that time, my friends had almost finished their first course) and he suggested fusilli al pesto. I said, perfect. What came out of the kitchen was not fusilli, but a strange shape of pasta which looked more like a 2 inches square accordium. I didn’t complain because I was hungry and the pesto was good and well combined to the potatoes and the string beans, as this genovese sauce should be.

Conclusion: do go to Pepolino but, before you order your pasta, ask them to bring the box  to your table.

4 Comments Add yours

  1. Marion Ungvarsky says:

    Interesting.
    Actually, again I am not surprised.
    You and I are immigrants, and whenever we meet Americans with our heritage, we make strange experiences like this.
    Things like this happened to me also, only in a german version. It is unbelievable what is being sold as being “authentic german” to Americans by other Americans, who claim being German, but then cannot even say their own names right…
    I can buy De Cecco pasta in a supermarket just 25 miles from here. My husband can go there after work, if I want him to (he is commuting even further), or he could pick that up on Sundays after his church.
    I would not pay moon prices in a restaurant for an item that I can buy locally in a store. But then, I am a cook, I am considering myself equal or better to these “chefs”.
    I am not willing to pay a week’s budget for one meal (for 2), when it is made of products I can buy locally and if it is not better than I could make it myself.
    We have made several experiences like that during the last 5 years. We would go out twice a year: for my birthday in July and for our anniversary in August. And each time the food for only us 2 would cost a whole week’s budget. Since we don’t have so much money, I decided to no longer do that.
    Instead I will use extra income to order items from you (and other places, admitted) and make it myself. This year I will make the Latini (chitarra) mit 2 Maida-based sauces. Price for that meal is a restaurant’s price, yes, but at least it is something special! Something worth to be made for the anniversary!
    Grazie Gustiamo!
    P.S. I would never go into an italian restauant in this country, because what you described is exactly what I would have expected. Without your report I have already assumed just that. So no surprise!

  2. I think the name can also describe what the restaurant serves every day. For the size of past, I am conscious about it. I like the best pasta shape and texture that can harmonize its taste based on its flavor. We have our own taste buds so you can choose pasta size and texture based on your appetite.

  3. beatrice says:

    ciao! thanks for writing you comment. although, i am not sure i understood well what you said.
    anyway, trenette, linguine and spaghetti are the shapes of my choice, with pesto.
    grazie ancora.

  4. tatiana says:

    I just left this restaurant and unfortunately come to share the unpleasant experience I had . Waiter extremely rude and ill prepared , just took my plate while I was still eating without asking anything.
    Awesome place , but horrible and superb service.

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