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.