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Monday, November 2, 2009

Bianca and Von

I am proud to announce I have started year number four in this great city of New York. After living here for some time now, I finally feel confident giving out recommendations.  The number one most asked question by friends and family is what is your favorite restaurant.  I never really thought about it much before and it was always a really hard question for me to answer.  This was because I never tried to go to the same place twice.  I live in a city full of restaurants and thought it would be great if I could keep trying out new places.  

Well, after three years I am finally ready to announce my all time favorite New York City restaurant. When trying to decide what my favorite restaurant was, I asked myself where do I go the most?  I didn't even have to think for a second to answer that one.  

So here it is, my favorite restaurant.  I would like to introduce you to Bianca

The team that charmed the Upper West Side with tiny Celeste has channeled the spirit of a Romagnese granny at this downtown outpost, where lasagna comes Emilia-Romagna-style (with béchamel and meat ragù), and a wonderfully chewy noodle called gramigna is studded with sausage and sweet red pepper. No reservations, no credit cards, and a very appealing, all-Italian wine list—just like uptown.  
— Rob Patronite and Robin Raisfeld

Bianca is a small cozy Italian restaurant that has much charm.  Even though I live in Little Italy, when I want Italian food I go to Bianca.  I usually go every few weeks.  I have taken every out of town family member and friend who has come to visit me.  I even celebrated my birthday at Bianca. I have introduced many of my local friends and coworkers to Bianca and they all love it as much as I do. 

Bianca was introduced to me by two of my favorite people, Jen and Jeff.  I remember the first time we went.  I thought I had died and gone to heaven.  Plus, it was nice to be around people who love food and can enjoy it just as much as I do.  

My favorite appetizer is the Gnocco Fritto. These are fried puffy dough rectangles with cold cuts or Stracchino cheese.  I recommend getting both the meat and cheese! The flavors together are amazing and practically melt in your mouth.  I can't even begin to describe how much I love, love, love this dish.


I think I have made myself clear about how often I eat at Bianca.  However, I don't come often enough to try different things.  My absolute favorite dish at Bianca is the lasagna. Just talking about it is making me hungry. Every time I go I want the lasagna, and I usually go because I want lasagna, and if I want lasagna I go to Bianca.  

My friends and family usually try different things so, I have been lucky enough to sample most of the menu which is also excellent.  My Mom has a favorite pasta dish which is the Gramigna con Salciccia e Peperoni. This has crumbled sausage and red bell peppers in it.


My list of friends who I have taken to Bianca consists of Jen & Jeff (multiple times), Mom & Dad (multiple times), Shannon, Sara (multiple times) and Sara's cousins and friends, Craig (multiple times) & Courtney , Mike Russell (multiple times),  Mary & Bryan, Peter, Kathryn, & Liz and Jennifer. I am sure I am missing people but, my point is, I would never take this many people to one single restaurant if I did not think it was amazing.   

Two things you do need to know about Bianca are:

1. Cash Only
2. No Reservations

So...get there fairly early or be prepared to have a few drinks and stop at the ATM first!




 On top of how amazing the food is, Bianca is also located within a 10 min walk from my apartment.  It is in a great neighborhood with many other restaurants and bars as well as stores.  The stores can become a problem because they tend to stay open pretty late and I love to shop. Especially after a glass of wine!


 Another great thing about Bianca is it's relationship with the bar, Von, which is right next door.  Because Bianca is small and popular to the locals, there tends to be a wait if you go after 6:30pm.  Bianca did the smarted thing you could probably think of.  They made friends with their neighbors.  What do I mean by this? Well, once you check in, they send you next door to Von to sit, relax and grab a drink. When your table is ready, they will come get you.  You and your drink walk next door for an amazing meal. Could it get more perfect than that?


 Von is also a small cozy bar that at times can also be very crowded.  However, recently they opened a basement bar which is very cool and one of our new favorite hang outs.  There is plenty of booth seating around what becomes a dance floor! We have had great times hanging out and celebrating.  Plus the bar tender is pretty cute!


 So, if you ever come visit me, please expect to visit Bianca and Von, two of my favorite places in New York City!



1 comment:

  1. YUMMY!! It was delicious! And the bar next door is fabulous!