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The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” – G.K. Chesterton

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Revisit: Italian @ Lupa Osteria Romana, New York

It was 2:30pm on a hot, sticky August afternoon in New York City, and we'd been cycling since 10am all over the city on poor quality rental bicycles. We hadn't had lunch yet, and the sustenance from our early breakfast had long disappeared early on in the ride. Hubby was hungry (but strangely, I wasn't), and his patience wore thin when both our first and backup meal options were not open for lunch business on Saturdays. When we rode past Lupa, we recognised it from our previous visit more than three years ago, and hubby was perfectly happy to head inside for some much-needed energy. After confirming that Lupa was still serving lunch and that our casual attire was not inappropriate, we sat down inside the cool air-conditioned restaurant, grateful for the break from the hot sun and cycling.

The entrance to Lupa Osteria:

Lupa is very nice (and a tad pricey) for an osteria. The atmosphere is relaxed and casual, and kids are welcomed here (at least it is during lunch service). The service was great, although our waitress was a little surly at the beginning (she gave fine service after the initial meeting). I've read that Lupa is super-popular and it gets very crowded for dinner, and I'll be sure to avoid coming here for dinner. The menu boasts a wide selection of antipasti and a nice variety of delicious-sounding pasta and main dishes.

Marinated Olives (US$6) to start with:

Complimentary bread and olive oil:

Mozzarella di Bufala, DOP & Grilled Leeks (US$15). This was so good:

A chef's special dish and not on the regular menu, Tagliatelle with Pork Shoulder, Mushrooms and Tomato. Very flavourful rag├╣, and the tagliatelle seemed handmade:

Saturday's piatto del giorno (special dish of the day) was Lamb Shortribs (US$22). The photo doesn't do justice to how good the dish was. I'm generally not a fan of lamb, but these shortribs were fall-off-the-bone tender, and full of flavour from the slightly sweet and sour gravy it was slow-cooked in:

Dessert #1 was Apician Spiced Dates & Mascarpone (US$9), and I loved it so! Each date was stuffed with an almond, and all the components went very well together. Even hubby (not a date fan) approved:

Second dessert was Olive Oil Torta & Blueberry. The cake was moist and a delight to eat, with only a hint of olive oil flavour:

It was great chancing upon one of our favourite eats from our 2009 trip, and we're happy to report that the experience was just as lovely three years later. Chef Mario Batali recently opened up a Lupa Osteria Romano in Hong Kong, and we'd love to give it a try.

[Prices quoted above are exclusive of additional taxes and tips.]

Lupa Osteria Romana
170 Thompson St
New York, NY 10012
(Greenwich Village)
Tel. +1 212 982 5089

Lupa on Urbanspoon

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