Convivio, Best of the Best

Dear Chef Michael White… you have made me fall in love with pasta all over again. For me, Italian food is something I have to be in the mood for, but I can see me coming to Convivio over and over and over again, just for your food… and your amazing perfect pasta. I haven’t had such amazing pasta, maybe ever [aside from the homeland in Rome], since dell’anima…. and I still keep pushing Scarpetta back… but I think my heart now lies here…. in your creations.

Convivio is the new Southern Italian restaurant from Chris Cannon and Chef Michael White. A restaurant rich in conviviality, flavor and passion, this acclaimed restaurant offers a pure translation of soulful dining—the Southern Italian way. Inspired by warm memories of Italian kitchens and the country’s unforgettable flavors—tomatoes, pancetta, sea urchin, and pesto—White’s menu travels through Italy’s Southern towns and creatively interprets revered recipes. Located in Manhattan’s charming Tudor City neighborhood, in the space of their former award-winning L’Impero, Convivio offers guests an irresistible opportunity to dine leisurely, sensuously and with gusto.

My date arrived later than me so I sat down first and ordered some champagne, a nice bubbly glass of Brut Nicolas Feuillatte NV

Delicious whole wheat bread with a burnt crust and the most amazing extra virgin olive oil to dip it in – EVER…. I was in love and ate at least 4 pieces of bread that night… amazing.. I could bath in that oil and lick it off my toes…. oh wait, TMI?

Delicious delicious wine

2006 Etna Rosso ‘A Rina Girolamo Russo

Round One

Barbabietole
beets, mozzarella, almonds

The creamy mozzarella combined with the earthy roasted beets [cooked perfectly might I add] and then the crunch of the almonds – delicious. I am a sucker for fresh mozzarella… everytime I buy a huge ball of it, it never lasts for more than a day… aside from homemade pizzas and homemade caprese salads… I just eat it like there’s no tomorrow…

Insalata di Mare

warm seafood salad, caper berries, lemon

I wouldn’t call it a “salad” perse but it was a nice light combo of seafood… perfectly cooked shellfish with a nice crusty garlic bread on the side. Didn’t really notice the caper berries or lemon too much but it was amazing nonetheless…

Arancini

saffron risotto croquettes

LOVE. LOVE. LOVE. LOVE. LOVE. The first time I had one of these was in Denver at duo… and since then I was hooked. These were even simpler than the duo ones… a light dusting of cheese atop the perfectly fried risotto balls… orgasmic.

TMI ALERT TMI ALERT — A certain someone once suggested me eating a Bahn Mi, drinking bubble tea and getting some loving = Ultimate — tempting but I think these would be even better ;D Hahaha…

Round Two

Zuppa di Ceci

chickpea soup, pig trotters, escarole

Tenderly cooked chickpeas [garbanzos, whichever — you say toe-may-toe I say toe-ma-toe] A delicious thick, but light, blended – super creamy – chickpea soup, almost chowder like, with nice tender veggies, some crunchy buttery garlicky [best word ever] croutons… not sure where the pig trotters were tho… pureed in the soup? irregardless… droool* I licked the bowl clean [obviously]

Polipo

tomato braised octopus, polenta, asiago

I love octopus and while there was more polenta than anything else on the plate, the octopussy was tender… and the polenta was AMAZING… I gobbled it all up!!!

Polpettine en Brodo

pork meatballs, broccoli rabe, ricotta salata

You know I’m obsessed with meatballs….  Obsessed… ;D These were tender, succulent and oh so tasty… love love lovessss… mine are still better tho ;D

Round Pasta [aka Three]

Then came the pasta dishes…. dinner date and I actually ended up ordering TWO more pasta dishes because they were so so tiny…  I’m a growing girl [horizontally] and I need my carbs!!!!…

Malloreddus

sardinian saffron, gnocchetti, crab, sea urchin

MMMM…. love gnocchi, love Sardinia [speaking of which, still need to go to that special restaurant to eat in the wine cellar with that certain someone…… I was stupid not to go last time I was offered to…. sigh*; and then there’s that Sardinia episode of No Reservations when Anthony Bourdain goes to his wifey’s homeland and that SEXY gooey cheesy scene… effing orgasmic…]  and of course, crab + Uni are just……. breathtaking…. the uni was super subtle, whereas if I didn’t know it was already in there, I wouldn’t be looking for it…. but the gnocchi was magnificent and perfectly cooked.

Orecchiette Nero

squid ink pasta, seppia ragu, lardo, broccoli rabe

SOOOO good…. I’m a huge fan of squid ink pasta, maybe it’s just the blackness of it, but I’m convinced the flavor is just as fantastic… and then of course… LARDO.. freaking LARDO… and broccoli rabe…. :D

This is when I ordered another set of pasta dishes.. still hungry for more carbs…..

AHH, this was the special of the day… totally forgot what it was… some squash tortellini – I remember it being a bit too sweet for me….. so I only ate a little bit of it and gave it all to the dinner date….

But then it gave me plenty of time to focus on my gorgeous….

Maccheroni alla Carbonara

pancetta, pecorino, scallion, egg, black pepper

The first time I ever had carbonara was my sophomore year in college… one of my close friends, Dave Choi, made me the most delicious and memorable dinner of my life. This was one one of the first meals that made me really fall in love with cooking… and truly appreciate egg yolk for more than a sunny-side up. This was also the first time I learned about pancetta.. and bacon being the lamer, but still good, substitute… since then, this is my go-to meal when I only have a few simple ingredients to create something wonderful… I even got my dad to fall in love with carbonara… and he hates cheese [except on pizza]

Round Four

My choice, a delicious side of Funghi Arrosto

wild mushrooms, garlic

I could never resist mushrooms.. altho I DO find while getting them in restaurants, they’re often too oily… but nonetheless, while they WERE, they were SO flavorful and there was SO many varieties of ‘shrooms… oh joy <3

Along side it, the “MAIN” course of the night… the duck.. quack quack… I’ve had so much pig that I decided to stick with duck and just duck as the main course [altho now I kinda wish I had gotten the suckling crispy piggie as well ;D hehe… The glutton in me…

Anatra

long island duck breast, grilled sausage, sunchokes, apples

Look at that perfect balance of skin, fat and rare medium rare meat… Delightful… not super memorable, but good

The night ended on a sour note with the date, so I opted to skip dessert… [altho I already had my choices picked out] … I paid the bill and we left in a hussy….

One a side note… when I went to the restroom…

SOOO many rolls of toilet paper to choose from on the wall…. Awesome, yet… why?

Trackbacks

  1. […] White…. while we still need to try Marea [who could resist Uni and Lardo on Crostini <3] Convivio has been at the top of our favorite go-to spots of pasta… now that Michael isn’t linked […]

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  2. […] who Michael White is… shame on you. Go google him.. haha jk, he used to be the genius behind Convivio… but has recently left it… Other of his restaurants are Marea, Osteria Morini, and […]

    Like

  3. […] to the same restaurants again… so when I do, it really means that the restaurant [and Michael White] made a huge impact on me.. my stomach… which basically is where my heart […]

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  4. […] Symon just made some arancini.  I’m very picky about my arancini – it’s either really good or BLAH. These were good.. loved the little bits of veggies on the stick :] Fun! Of course […]

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