I love risotto, but I can't abide all the stirring, which is essential to obtain the desired creaminess without burning the dish. So when I learned about Risotteria, a restaurant whose claim to fame is the eponymous risotto, I assumed (correctly, as it turned out) that I'd love it. For those who have issues with gluten, this is a fine choice because many of the dishes (the menu includes a range of appetizers, panini, pizza, and salad as well as the risotto) are gluten-free and/or vegetarian. The only problem is that word has gotten around, and the Bleecker Street location is tiny, so long waits are inevitable. (Those who live close enough to carry out are in luck, though.) A bench in front offers a place to people-watch during the wait in warmer weather. Risotto is rich, so a single order with a salad is plenty for two. Wine is available and I'm told the desserts are good although I have never had any room left to taste them.
Favorite Dish: It's nearly impossible to choose a favorite. I'm tied between the carnaroli risotti with roasted leg of lamb, gorgonzola and spinach, or the Friday special, which is shrimp, sausage, mozzarella and saffron. Mmmm...
We had dinner twice in this very special restaurant. The food is delicate and delicious and the service is friendly. It is a very small restaurant, though, so be you won’t have much privacy. Personally, I found this to be part of the charm.
The food is quite affordable – cheep when you consider the quality. We shared a starter, had a risotto each and a bottle of quite nice red wine to wash it down – all for 50 USD.
Like I mentioned, Risotteria is a bit on the small side and it can feel a bit hectic. But it is a charming place and the people who come and go are part of the experience.
As the name implies, this restaurant specializes in risottos. You can choose from 35 types of risotto; some based on Arborio rice, some on Vialone nano and some on Carnaroli. There is a nice little selection of Italian style starters and a lot of interesting salads on the menu. If you are not in the mood for risotto, there is a selection of panini and a lot of pizzas; some with tomato sauce, some with olive puree and some with pesto as a base.
And let’s not forget the bread sticks! They are huge: crispy on the outside, moist and aromatic on the inside. And they are on the house ☺
If you are a vegetarian, more than half of the menu at Risotteria is for you. The restaurant also specializes in gluten free food. All of the pizzas and panini are available as gluten free.
Favorite Dish: I tasted three different risottos and they were all to die for. Vialone nano with italian parsley and white truffle oil was a dream.