The weekend after New Year’s, I thought of reconnecting with a few friends I’ve missed over the holidays. Discussing where we should have brunch, I found out one of my friends recently moved to the Upper West Side, just steps away from Salumeria Rosi.*
Salumeria Rosi is a small neighborhood salumi shop found right at the entrance and it shares the space of the 30-ish seat restaurant. In the middle of the restaurant it has an interesting, primarily white carving except the colored portions were the hams and salumi.
This restaurant (and its newer Upper East Side location) is owned by Chef Cesare Casella. If you ever met the chef, he always have a few sprigs of rosemary in his pocket. Now, we see it on tucked in our napkins when we settled on our table on that chilly Saturday morning. Our waitress informed us that the menu is generally small plates where sharing is encouraged and there was also a separate brunch menu page.
Since this restaurant is known for very good charcuterie (or salumi, if you do want to speak in Italian terms), we had to share the small platter of assorted meats ($18). A delicious medley of perfectly sliced parma cotto, prosciutto di Parma, mortadella, arista (slow roast pork loin), speck, cacciatorino sweet and spicy, and porchetta. We also had Tuscan Bloody Marys ($9 each) that were good and had a bit more of a rosemary undertone compared to a typical Bloody Mary.
My Pancia ($15) was quite delicious and appropriately hearty for that chilly afternoon. Slow cooked wonderfully, fatty Berkshire pork belly with its crispy skin. Mixed with Tuscan chickpeas, bitter blanched greens, and glorious crispy skin.
One of my friends ordered their signature lasagna ($15). It was a pretty darn good lasagna. Not overwhelmingly sauced and cheesy like I had from bad childhood memories eating this. Balanced and I do like the made with a pork and beef ragù as well as béchamel sauce cooked in this pasta.
My other friend wanted something sweet and had the Tuscan Toast ($12). Two rounds of custard-y French toast with fresh whipped cream and mixed berries. I didn’t see or taste anything Tuscan about it but it was a good French toast that wasn’t too dense or too sweet.
The food is very good and for some might argue the portions are small, it’s a great spot for a quick meal. Service is a touch aloof at times but generally attentive enough since it was the first weekend after New Year’s. But the music played while we were there was pretty awful (think Bruno Mars and Maroon 5).
To view more photos of this meal, please view the slideshow below (or CLICK HERE for my photo set):
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283 Amsterdam Avenue (73rd Street)
Telephone: (212) 877-4800
*All photos on this post were taken with my iPhone.