Thursday, June 5, 2008

New York State of Mind

Last weekend I went to New York to visit my good friends Franca and Matt while Rick was in North Carolina. Rick and I have really been missing authentic Italian so Franca saw to it that I got my fill!

The first Italian meal we had was at Dominic's near Fordham University. It's nestled in a "Little Italy" full of shops to purchase the best Italian groceries. This is a great restaurant to go to, especially if you know what you like. There is no menu so they basically make everything. The restaurant is staffed with little Italian men who are SO CUTE! The seating is family style so when the place gets packed you meet new friends sitting beside you. The food was more than what I expected. We ordered a ton and took most of it back to Matt to finish. The highlight for me was the stuffed artichoke but the anti-pasta, penne vodka, chicken marsala and veal were all fantastic. I highly recommend making a trip to Dominic's if you are a true Italian enthusiast. However, go early to avoid a long wait. They do not hurry out their customers so you could be waiting a very long time.

Lombardi's Original Margharita Pizza - YUM!

My second Italian was real NY pizza - something else Rick and I miss here in Texas. Some places come close, but no cigar. Obviously, one of the best places in NYC is Lombardi's. SO GOOD! It was just as good as I remembered it to be when Rick and I stumbled upon it by accident a few years ago. After the pizza we stopped by a contemporary little place down the street called Rice to Riches where they serve a variety of flavored rice puddings. They come in cute little bowls and all over the store are hilarious signs like this one on the front window.

It is very modern and most important, very GOOD! Yum. I was tempted to stop by the Pinkberry yogurt shop beside it afterwards since I've been dying to try some but alas, my tummy would not let me.

Franca herself @ Lombardi's

The third Italian meal was from Franca - well, sort of. She bought the ravioli but made the sauce. I don't remember where she bought the ravioli but - man oh man - you have not had good ravioli until the cheese and buttery flavor just melt in your mouth. I'll have to get the name from Franca of the shop and update the post for any who may be stopping by NYC or would like to order some and have it shipped.

We also ate at the French Culinary Institute. That was quite the experience and the food was out of this world good. Such a treat!

Matt and Franca really spoiled me all weekend. We had a great time shopping around Canal Street. I love being in the city. I love all the people and the varied cultures. Now, don't get me wrong, I love to leave it too! Here are some snapshots from the weekend.

View From Jersey City (Outside Goldman Sachs)

Jersey City Memorial

Lombardi's Coal Oven

More Jersey City Memorial - I love this one.

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