Everyone knows that Mario Batali is a great chef. But it's not just because he makes great spaghetti. It's because he has produced a veritable army of talented chefs that learned from him -- or in some cases, from his lieutenants and proxies. When your chefs can produce their own great chefs, now that's a legacy. And it gets bigger, and wider, every day.
A joint venture between Italian superchef Mario Batali and bread whiz Nancy Silverton, Mozza has become one of the shining stars of LA's dining scene, largely on the strength of its pastas and very fine pizza.
How can you get such extraordinary pasta from a kitchen so small it could function as an oubliette? And at such a reasonable cost? And with such a good wine list? I don't know.
What started out a loving tribute to Italian-American food from two talented young line cooks has morphed under their genius into a true culinary destination, a French Laundry for the Sunday Gravy set. No reservations.
With a chef trained at Mario Batali's Babbo in New York and an old-world style pizza oven that delivers the blistering char great pizza requires, Moto Bene has all it needs to produce world-class pizza.
This big, raucous, and contrived, modeled on similar big-box rustic Italian restaurants, has the cool / casual vibe down pat; but the food is surprisingly good.
Bunk poses a serious question: are these the country's greatest sandwiches? In their power, portliness, richness, diversity, and the genius with which various hot meats are paired with different fresh breads, I honestly can't say. This or that po-boy or cheesesteak may compete; but Bunk beats them all for sheer virtuosity.
A collaboration between the city's most succesful and stylish new restaurateur, Gabe Stulman, and arguably the most talented young chef in town, Perla manages to be both uninhibitedly meat and also somehow romantic. It's a place you can take a girl on a date and still eat beef tongue and tripe pasta. It can be a little loud but who cares. A must-visit for New Yorkers interested in modern Italian food.
Like its sister restaurants, Dell'Anima and L'Artusi, this swank downtown Italian restaurant delivers a sexy atmosphere, robust but modern food, and a slick wine program. It's a date place where a single person can eat really well, without spending a fortune.
Rich Torrisi and Mario Carbone modernized the flavors of Italian-American food at their acclaimed restaurant, Torrisi; at Carbone, they pay homage to those flavors in their most unreconstructed form, recreating an opulent mid-century red sauce joint with all the skill and ambition they can muster.