Just when I thought our trip couldn't get any better, it did. I've wanted to go to Mario Batali's restaurant Babbo ever since I heard about this place. I made the reservation exactly a month to the day of our reservation. They weren't kidding when they said that you'd better have their number on speed dial. I called as soon as they opened and still could not get through. Finally after being on hold for a good 10 minutes I finally acquired a reservation. Now I just had to wait for a month. Man was that a long month. And as the date approached I was waiting in anticipation. I didn't want to get my expectations too high so I just tried to quell my excitement. Finally, the day had come, and me and my wife were excited as can be. The atmosphere was a lot more lively than I had envisioned and also more casual. We both decided to get the pasta tasting menu. The course consisted of five pasta courses and three desserts.
The Pasta Tasting Menu:
1. Black Tagliatelle w/Parsnips & Pancetta
2. "Casunzei" w/ Poppy Seeds
3. Garganelli w/ "Funghi Trifolati"
4. Domingo's Pyramids w/ Passato di Pomodoro
5. Pappardelle Bolognese
6. "Fritelle di Caciotta" w/Figs & Honey
7. "Fior di Latte" w/Raspberry Vincotto
8. Chocolate Chestnut Budino w/ Chestnut Gelato
9. Pineapple Tart (bonus dessert)
When people ask how I liked Babbo? My answer is an emphatic Yes! The first course was so delicious it's beyond explanation. I think this dish was the one of the best of the night. The texture of the pasta was outstanding and the harmony of the pancetta and parsnips was just exquisite. I definitely was Wowed. At this point, I didn't want to get hopes up too high for the upcoming courses, but I told myself if it's anywhere near the taste of the first dish, we were in for a treat. When the second course came out and the waiter explained that it consisted of roasted beets, I was a bit hesitant. As I stated in my introduction to myself, I am pretty picky. When I took my first bite,all of my reservations went out the window. It was outstanding. Like I told my wife, if beets taste like this, I'd eat them every day. The third course was the mushroom dish with the rolled pasta. The texture of this pasta is what really intrigued me. It was al dente and silky. Yet another home run. The fourth dish, which happened to be my wife's favorite dish was the pyramids. These were superb! Inside each of these bite-sized pyramids were braised beef. And the sauce on this dish was delicious. In my opinion, the previous dishes were more about the texture of the different pastas along with delicate yet savory flavors. This fourth dish seemed to be more about the sauce. The fifth and final savory dish was the bolognese. I was looking forward to this dish ever since I looked at the menu on Babbo's website. When it came out, it looked and smelled great and tasted even better! Now it was time for the desserts. Good thing they weren't too big. I don't think we could have walked out of the restaurant without assistance. We were completely stuffed, but like I said, there's always a little room for dessert. The first of desserts was the ball shaped fried dough with cheese with figs and honey. They were surprisingly light and scrumptious. The little seeds in the figs added another element of texture to this dessert. The next dessert was the fior di latte. This custard along with the raspberry vincotto sauce was a perfect balance of the tartness of the sauce and the creaminess of the custard. The chocolate cake in my opinion was just okay. I thought that the pineapple tart was much better. The entire meal took approximately 3 hours, but did not seem that long, perhaps because the food and company was that good.
110 Waverly Place
New York, NY