18 Mill Street
Port Chester, NY 10573
Ambiance:8 Service:7 Food: 8 Price: $$$
From the street, standing only a couple hundred feet from America's claustrophobic culture of chains and shopping centers, is an erected 100-year-old square, pompously painted avocado meets olive, adorned with creme trim and internally boasting a cultural trattoria experience just through the double wooden doors.
Inside, the walls emanate a rustic Italian warmth with it's Berkshire beige hue bedecked with decorative tapestries. Structural pillars are positioned throughout the room with sculpted shelves boasting bottles of Italian vino (which they have no problem doing as their wine list is a conglomeration of hundreds of bottles from all regions of Italy ranging from $30 to $1,200 per bottle).
With a menu boasting dishes such as "Goat Cheese with Pistachios and Truffle Honey artisan pizza ($14)", "Tuna Tartare Tartufo with Marcona Almonds ($13)", "Black Fettuccine with Shrimp and Artichokes ($19)" and "Whole Roasted Branzino with Orange Mint Jam ($29)", even the fiscally conservative can indulge in a gastronomic experience without leaving with pockets whose only remnants of money is the lint from a dime.
I embraced the "Guanciale, Black Truffles and Sunny Side Egg pizza ($17)" like a two year old does his mom; I could feel the Italian love wafting out of it's artisan crust. As I chewed on a slice of ciabatta bread (served with a dish of olive oil with baby Italian olives), my mouth set itself up for the biggest orgasm ever encountered. If marriage with a pizza could exist legally, consider this one my bride. The unsmoked pig's jowl "guanciale" was delicately peppery with a rich porky succulence that bosomed the opulent earthy and leathery gems; the shaved black truffles. In the center of the pizza was a sunny side up egg, bleeding its rich yellow yolk over the layers of melted fresh mozzarella adding to this hedonistic affair.
Opened in 2008 by Food Network famed chef Mario Batali and Joe Bastianich, this Port Chester, NY establishment is one not to be missed. Take a date, take your family, take yourself, just don't ask if Mario Batali is in the back; Chef Andy Nusser is the mastermind behind this sybaritic adventure.