Thursday, January 26, 2012
Review: Eataly, New York City
I've been hearing so many good things about Eataly. How authentic it is, how delicious it is, how interesting people like to go there, and how it's an "it" place to go to in the Flat Iron District. You might recognize the names of one of the partners, Mario Batali. But what is it? I've always wondered. So on a very cold winter's day, I had to go and find out.
Eataly is a mix of grocery store, coffee shop, charcuterie, cheesemonger, bookstore, and wine bar all rolled into one little destination that is greater than the sum of its parts. Almost everything is freshly imported from Italy and is 100% authentic to Italian cuisine. Their philosphy is to consume the highest quality products that are produced in a fair, clean environment, and to share them with friends and family. There is a bakery with fresh breads, a chocolatier with decadent treats that look through the glass displays like puppies in a pet store - just begging me to scoop them up and take them home. Imported specialty jams, sauces, vinegars, and olive oils pattern every nook and cranny to an exhibition designer's dream and foodie's delight, as each package is new, exciting, and perfectly organized. At every turn I was overwhelmed by the impecably fresh selection, beautiful displays, crisp, modern design, and the hords of people. This is not a well kept secret! If it was 10 degrees when we went, I can't imagine the crowd when it's nice out. But still, I found myself drooling and wanting to buy everything I saw.
My girlfriend, Katie, eats here often for a lunch-time panini, so if you go, I recommend grabbing one of those, some freshly sliced cured meats, a cheese plate, oh! and some specialty chocolates, warm bread, wine, a cappuccino....