Magazine article The New Yorker

Tables for Two

Magazine article The New Yorker

Tables for Two

Article excerpt

55-15 37th Ave., at 56th St., Woodside, Queens (718-446-1500)--By day, this cinder-block storefront is an import business, a purveyor of ceci beans, balsamic vinegars, and wholesale cheeses from the old country. By night, it's a valet-parking trattoria with a gift for excess: Thursday and Sunday evenings, for example, opera singers in business attire serenade the diners tableside. Day or night, it's a volume business.

The food is all very vincero!, vincero!, vincero!, stagy and built for big Italian wines. The salad of field greens, usually a demure choice of appetizers, arrives looking like an endive warhead until you slip off the tiny garter of red pepper at the top and the whole thing collapses in a frilly spread like a cancan dancer. Among the pastas, the Oscar goes to the fettuccine all'Antonio, with prosciutto and truffle oil, which is pushed out on a dessert cart and is tossed right in front of you, inside a big wheel of Parmesan cheese. The wines, mostly small-production labels such as Sagrantino di Montefalco and Begali Amarone that go well with cured meats, prove that the importers, Frank Galano and his son Anthony, take their working vacations seriously. …

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