jangita's Profile

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Italian restaurants in Miami

Can you be more specific than "Italian Restaurant"?
Do you want rustic, any specific region, Italian American?
White table cloths?

I just made a reservation at Macchialina on Alton Rd. for my personal choice. I'm most interested in food quality and don't want to pay Scarpetta prices.

Favorite cookbooks by NYC chefs

Dolce Italiano--Italian dessert cookbook by Gina De Palma, formerly of Babbo.

Absolutely fabulous!

Dec 04, 2014
jangita in Manhattan

Do certain menu items put you off going to a restaurant?

and Fettuccine Alfredo.

Nov 15, 2014
jangita in General Topics

Four days Rome, four days Venice

I can recommend Estro in Venice. It's a newish (opened in June 2014) wine bar with fabulous food. It's not far from the Frari, near the well known Tonolo bakery.

Nov 09, 2014
jangita in Italy

Venice- New Year's Eve

Here are my notes from diner at CoVino, June 2014:

It's a very small place, open kitchen set up, only 6 tables and was, coincidentally, just written up in the NYTimes. We enjoyed everything but the flavors didn't knock me out at all. Best thing about it was Andrea who totally runs the front of the house. What a pro! We ate: very nice octopus salad, a decidedly un-Venetian baked pasta dish (which was maybe the best dish of the night--it had pecorino, becamel and ragu); Ken had sausage which he didn't love because it had a bit of cloves in it. I had some kind of "slow food" chicken which was good but I didn't love the thick sauce with it. Desserts were: tiramisu (I thought would be a lot more creative but was quite traditional) and Ken had "Fugazza" which turned out to be like Pennetone with a sauce.
The wine pairings were wonderful! Ken especially loved the organic prosecco and we also shared a scrumptious moscato d'Asti with the dessert.

Nov 05, 2014
jangita in Italy

Best Thai in south florida?

Just got take-out from Thai House 2 on 163rd St. I would give it a C-.
Low bar, confirmed.

Quick review of NoMad

Full disclosure--I have eaten at EMP under Daniel Humm 3 times and it is my favorite restaurant EVER. NoMad just isn't close enough. Maybe I expected too much but I was slightly underwhelmed. I loved the pumpkin app--great flavors especially with the citrus dressing. The duck dish was delicious but I really needed a steak knife for cutting the whole breast; it was a little "tough." My husband had the truly beautiful lobster dish but the lobster itself was short on flavor and very small. I really loved my Pimm's cup but when the cocktail is the real star of a dinner something's less than perfect. The service just didn't feel right either. We sat in the fire place room and felt too close to the other twosomes on our sides.

Oct 08, 2014
jangita in Manhattan

Dinner at The NoMad (Restaurant) -- Recommendations

Please report back.
I have a reso there for Fri. the 26th.

Sep 16, 2014
jangita in Manhattan

Piemonte - Acqui Terme

I Caffi is in the pedestrian zone and fabulous!
Lunch in the wine cellar or dinner upstairs.


Aug 26, 2014
jangita in Italy

First time in Venice- rec for light dinner on arrival?

Cavatappi would be perfect.

Aug 05, 2014
jangita in Italy

Venice in April for 7 nights

I think Fiaschetteria Toscana, Vini da Gigio and Al Paradiso are exacty what you are describing. La Cantina is very casual and certainly not known for their service--which is not to say they don't have wonderfully fresh food and I have twice had fantastic salad platters for lunch there.
I may be the only one but I had a negative experience at Da Alberto--dried out food, surly service and with so very many options in Venice I haven't had time to try it again. La Bitta is different from the rest in general ambiance. It is homier, more comfort foodish, but they still take themselves and the place quite seriously.
I would eliminate Noboli. It's just not up to the standards of the rest.
You seem to have a wonderful list. Don't forget to report back.

Aug 05, 2014
jangita in Italy

A day in Modena, with an acetaia thrown in

Not able to answer your question but don't miss the Modena food market. It's an easy walk from Giusti, on the other side of the main piazza.
It is chock full of beautiful produce, meats, cheeses and bakery stuff.

I am not sure how you can plan on dinner after Giusti. We were so full! BTW--we drank the house lambrusco and loved it. The antipasto of mixed salume with gnoccho fritto was really memorable and the wine pairing was just right. They served a darker, fuller bodied lambrusco with the hot food that was also wonderful.

Jul 19, 2014
jangita in Italy

Mostly meat in Venice -trip report

We felt the same way about La Bitta. Over the years we've probably eaten there about 6 times but this trip eating braised meat just didn't fit our seasonal desires. And like you, I felt the menu just seemed a bit heavy. Granted, we were there on a very warm June evening. They never have failed to steer us well on the sine choices, though.

Jun 28, 2014
jangita in Italy

Venice/ Florence/ Rome Trip report (very long)

Great report!

Jun 20, 2014
jangita in Italy

Venice restaurant picks?

I had lunch, today, at Vecio Fritolin and can highly recommend it. They are known for their frittura (mixed fried seafood) and for its freshness. They really lived up to the lofty reputation. We had a green gnocchi with mussels in a lovely light tomato sauce for a starter--very good.

Friend had prawn carpaccio with baby artichokes and baked cod for secondo and he said it was very good, too.

But I loved the frittura!

Dessert was a coffee and cardamom custard--totally yummy.
Good wine selection.
Perfect service.
Good air conditioning, too.

It's a Venice institution. Go!

Jun 12, 2014
jangita in Italy

Venice pastry and chocolate shops

You cannot miss VizioVirtu chocolate shop. Take the vap to San Toma if it's too hot to walk.

Jun 09, 2014
jangita in Italy

How early to reserve at Hosteria Giusti in Modena

Just to follow up--we had a fantastic meal. People without reservations were turned away but one party was seated outside.

Lunch lived up to the reputation. We started with Gnoccho Fritto, saying they are light pillows of fried dough really doesn't do them justice. They are served warm topped with a few different salumi, prosciutto, salami, pancetta and lardo, all melting on top. Eaten with your hads they would have been enough for me--so much flavor and so satisfying. We also had a zucchini sformato (flan?) with crispy prosciutto. To avoid continuing to say amazing and delicious, I'll just list the rest of what we ate: Tagliatelle with guanciale sauce and a kind of pulled room temperature pork with warm balsamic caramelized onions. We drank 2 kinds of Lambrusco with it--a light one first and then a fuller bodied dark purple one with the heavier dishes. Ken had to have the chocolate pudding for dessert which was super dark and he loved it. I had a grappa from Piemonte. Giusti is totally family owned and opperated. It runs like a well oiled machine.

Thanks for the help chowhounds!

May 31, 2014
jangita in Italy

Zeb! in Florence

I cannot recommend this place highly enough. We had an absolutely fabulous lunch there today. And we took home a couple of dishes for dinner.
For lunch we had 2 superb pasta dishes. One was a simple homemade spaghetti with black truffles (14 euro). It had just enough salt to bring out the truffle flavor and the pasta was cooked to perfection. Also, large "ravioli" were not square--kind of free form--stuffed with ricotta and zucchini flowers, topped with a burrata sauce, zucchini and poppy seeds. You would have to taste it to believe the loveliness of the gentle flavors--(12 euro).
We shared one dessert--a small glass with mixed berries on the bottom, custard above and perfectly crispy puffed pastry on top.

We took home 2 pieces of pork stuffed with asparagus and one large stuffed round zucchini. Which, even though they were "to go" were really delicious for our supper.

Zeb has only counter space in a very contemporary space. I was told that you need a reservation for dinner but not for lunch and it proved to be true. There was space for us at 12:45 but it was mostly full.

May 29, 2014
jangita in Italy

Italian Cheap Eats

There is a place in Florence on Via Macci, across from Cibreo. The sign just says Slumeria. But walk in and there is a buffet of simple food--farro salad, bread salad, little sandwiches, a few pasta dishes and more. For 4 euro you get a larege glass of "rosso o bianco" and the buffet. Albeit--paper plates and plastic forks. Talk about non touristy! and cheap.

May 29, 2014
jangita in Italy

Florence, no touristy spots please

Had lunch today at Trattoria Casalinga. The tourists I observed were from Spain. All the rest were speaking Italian and most seemed to be regulars. We enjoyed a solidly wonderful Tuscan meal. The highlight was the just salty enough, roast pork, listed on the Piatti del giorni.
We had 2 pastas--Ortolana with lots of nice veggies and Aglione--fresh pasta, but not really pici, with fresh tomatoes and lots of chunks of garlic. Mixed salad was standard. Service was super efficient--not exactly friendly but certainly not rude.

Overall--we loved it!

May 26, 2014
jangita in Italy

Do we need reservations for Zeb in Florence?

Also for lunch at Trattoria Casalinga?


May 16, 2014
jangita in Italy

Venice -- Finding the Restaurants

I have had great success with the Knopf guides map books. The pages fold out for great readable detail.

May 14, 2014
jangita in Italy

Venice restaurant with lots of charm

I think Al Paradiso, near Rialto, fits your description but not sure about the Sunday and Monday hours.

Apr 11, 2014
jangita in Italy

Padova / Padua , please review or add to my restaurant list

I had a lovely lunch at L'anfora about 2 years ago. Like Julia, above, I loved the scene. We had to take a walk and come back for a table because they were full when we arrived.

Apr 02, 2014
jangita in Italy

Recommendations - Whirlwind Rome / Florence / Venice Food Tour

I think this is moeche season. not to be missed!

Mar 29, 2014
jangita in Italy

How early to reserve at Hosteria Giusti in Modena

When will you be there?

Mar 27, 2014
jangita in Italy

Meat in Venice?

We ate at Oniga, 4 years ago and everyone in our party of 4 found it disappointing.
Ate at Pane Vino e San Daniele on San Barnaba, 2 years ago, and had a very enjoyable, simple meal.

Mar 21, 2014
jangita in Italy

Trying to find bagged Ice in Florence

If you have an apartment you will likely have a freezer and probably can make some ice yourselves.

Mar 20, 2014
jangita in Italy

Meat in Venice?

La Bitta in Dorsoduro, very near Campo San Barnaba, is a great non seafood option. They generally have two seatings, at 7 and 9.

Mar 19, 2014
jangita in Italy

How early to reserve at Hosteria Giusti in Modena

I wrote back to Giusti that the Hotel was making the reservation for us. They wrote a really nice email back.
So, we have our reso and good vibes, too.

Mar 01, 2014
jangita in Italy