Mangia Portale…


Hyped Italian food.

Should I go or should I stay?!

I went and I am so glad that I did not succumb to the plethora of press…odd admission for a publicist.

Portale is a scrumptious, casual new restaurant from Alfred Portale who helmed the Gotham Bar and Grill for 35 years.

Portale is located in Chelsea which is not my favorite area to dine, but fear not, Portale is fabulous.

We visited Portale last Saturday, the inaugural day of their brunch menu.

The atmosphere is casual, warm and inviting.

Latifa, our well informed server, originally from Algeria, is a real asset.

She convinced me with her money back guarantee to try the cocktail Ciao Bella…Portale’s inventive take on the Aperol Spritz ($10).

We decided to do a menu sampling and kicked the meal off with an outstanding Insalata Di Cesare with trevisano, romaine and parmigiano. The delectable salad was perfectly chilled and crunchy ($15).

Next up probably the best Crudo I have ever eaten, Crudo Di Ricciola with fresh sweet ample portions of hamachi with a terrific avocado-basil purée, radish, orange and crispy Calabrian chili ($23).

The following course was an outrageous Breakfast Bruschetta with warm smoked salmon fillet and  trout roe layered with mascarpone…amazing ($17).

We skipped the mains which consisted of Cacio e Pepe, a Truffle Burger, Branzino, Roast Chicken and an Omelette.

We selected two sides. The crispy parmigiano potatoes were mouthwatering and served piping hot ($8).

The Cauliflower was my least favorite as I prefer my own recipe, but it was good, complimented by raisins and breadcrumbs ($8).

For dessert we had to sample Portale’s homemade Cinnamon Roll served with a side of cream cheese icing. The huge bun was beyond delicious ($13).

Desserts and breads are created by pastry chef Kaity Mitchell formerly of Gotham.

Portale’s team consists of experienced co-chefs de cuisine Jacinto Guadarrama and Adam Longworth who also hail from Gotham.

Upstairs is a lovely private dining room.

Portale also serves an outstanding 2-course lunch for $28.

Portale is a creative, satisfying addition to the NYC dining scene.

 

Portale 126 West 18th Street New York City. Open for dinner Monday-Thursday 5:30-10:30 pm, Friday & Saturday: 5:00-11:00 pm, Sunday: 5:00-10:00 pm. Lunch Wednesday-Friday 11:45am-2:30pm. Brunch Saturday & Sunday 11:00am-2:30pm. Reservations on OpenTable.com.

 

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