With the warm weather making its exit and the cold, brisk weather of the fall making its way in, Manhattanites are in search for some warm and hearty meals to keep themselves toasty and satisfied throughout the next couple of months. Manhattan has its bevy of places to choose from when it comes to the best of the best in Italian food, however there is one place in the West Village worth stopping by if you are ever in the Christopher Street area- Olio e Piu, located at 3 Greenwich Avenue.
Olio e Piu is visually very appealing, with the color green being its true standout right on the outside of the restaurant, yet when you walk inside you feel like you are brushed off to Italy with the way how the establishment is actually setup. Its warm and dark colors encompass the setting completely and it becomes even more beautiful if not romantic during the dinner hours when the lights are dimmed and the candles are lit. It also happens to be very spacious which works for large groups of people or just a simple dinner for two.
The menu speaks for itself as it stands true with how delicious authentic Italian food can actually be. The menu is multi-dimensional in terms of what you can order and is plentiful in each category. You can start traditionally with their Antipasti and fresh Bruschette. A dish that I definitely recommend starting with is the Polpette di Vitello Ripiene, otherwise known as Veal Meatballs. The Meatballs are served with a delicious tomato sauce and are cooked to perfection. Meatballs and sauce go together like Peanut Butter & Jelly, and this is a great example of a starter dish. If you want to go with a classic I would recommend trying the Insalata Caprese, comprised of fresh tomatoes, burrata, basil oil and a balsamic glaze. Something I really loved about this dish is that it is simple in its approach yet has such an incredible flavor texture. I love the use of the different color of tomatoes (classic red and vibrant orange) that pair really well with the creaminess of the burrata. Mix that with the oil and glaze and it is a tasty dish to start out your night.
For me and my friend, we had one thing on our mind- Polenta. And Polenta is exactly what we got in two very different preparations in terms of what they were paired with. First is the Maiale alla Diavola, which is Polenta resting under a perfectly cooked pork chop. The other option would be Polenta alla Bolognese, which is exactly what it sounds like. A Bolognese consisting of beef, veal and pork on top of their delicious Polenta. Both had incredible taste textures and really brought it home when it came to authentic Italian cooking.
They also have an amazing assortments of fresh pizza and pasta dishes for you to devour. After a hearty meal if you are still lingering for something sweet, your best bet would be to try the Lemon Ricotta Pana Cotta, with fresh Raspberry compote and chocolate shavings cannoli crumbs. A delicious and satisfying way to end your meal. This was a 9 out of 10 in my book, and is something definitely worth trying out next time you hop on the 1 towards Christopher Street.
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Happy eating everyone!