Chef Mario Batali (Iron Chef America)
If I lived in NY, I can see myself going to Eataly quite often. Eataly is this really neat specialty market co-owned by Mario Batali. You can find truffle, caviar, fresh pasta, beautiful veal chops, and unique produce there. Nestled inside the market are a bunch of restaurants too. Everything from sandwiches to pizza or pasta. We sat in the La Pizza/La Pasta side. Their pizza looked really good. It's cooked in their wood fire oven brought over from Naples. But I was already set on trying some Batali-style pasta. I ordered the Spaghettone Cacio e Pepe. It was cooked very al dente. Coming from someone who likes their pasta overcooked at home, I have to say al dente is quite nice. The pasta was tossed in cheese from Lazio and black pepper. That's it. But I kept trying to figure out if there was some secret sauce in it. The pasta was so creamy. So good. Matt ordered the veal ravioli special. It was very good and tender. There was also some bread for us to snack on before our meal came out. I didn't really like it...it was too yeasty.
But if you go to Eataly you have to stop by the Gelateria. The best gelato I've ever had. I had a scoop of the pistachio and scoop of the chocolate. So good! The pistachio is very pistachio-y, but pairs so good with the chocolate. Matt had the chocolate and raspberry. I'm not big on raspberry but he loved it. Seriously best gelato. We also tried some gelato at the Little Italy town near Chinatown at this place called La Ferrara. Horrible place. Bad service and the gelato wasn't like gelato. It was just ice cream. We wished we had trekked over to Eataly again for their gelato.
Spaghettone Cacio e Pepe
Chocolate and Pistachio Gelato
You might even run into Mario Batali like we did!! It made my day when I saw him - thanks to my husband who is very observant :)