Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Brunch at Locanda Verde

Items long overdue on my list of things to do:
1. Try brunch at Locanda Verde.
2. Meet with our dear friend Traci to catchup on life.

Solution: Saturday brunch with Traci and Geoff @ Locanda Verde!  (Note: I would recommend making reservations; we finagled a slot for 3 for 10:15,* and the place was already bustling when we arrived!)

Locanda Verde is tucked among tall, aged buildings in TriBeca.  It's a part of town I rarely venture in, but there are plenty of restaurants in the charming area--reminscent of the Meatpacking District with brick, cobblestones and trendy eateries on many corners.

THE appetizer dish to try is the sheepsmilk ricotta cheese.  A plate of ricotta cheese as an appetizer doesn't sound amazing, but top it with truffle honey, and you've piqued my interest:

Sheepsmilk ricotta with truffle honey + freshly cracked black pepper + burnt orange toast
Last year, I didn't like ricotta cheese because I was dumb and thought it was the same thing as cottage cheese, however, after being forced to eat it at Vinegar Hill House, I must say - ricotta cheese is pretty good!  And Locanda Verde's was top notch.  We smothered our toasts thick with the amazingly creamy cheese, diving our knives into the honey drizzle to stack even more cheese onto our crispy crostinesque toast.  The orange flavor was a nice subtlety but  the pepper was my favorite, of course, which elevated the combination of sweet, smooth and faint citrus to a whole other level.  The only downfall to this dish is that there was not enough pieces of toast!  (We remedied that by just eating the excess cheese by the spoonfuls.)

And as if I did not have enough ricotta yet, I went all out to try one of their most popular brunch dishes: lemon and blueberry ricotta pancakes.

Soft, fluffy pancakes needing no syrup at all - the bright, slightly sweet but not too tart lemon curd was enough!  I usually have a hard time finishing a whole plate of pancakes, but the bright citrus flavor and the light pancakes made it easy!  It was satisfying without being decadent.
Traci's zucchini frittata with a dollop of goat cheese and small mounds of roasted tomato which she loved.  She had no problem polishing it off.
Uovo Modenese with cotechino hash (a sausagey hash), spinach and tomato hollandaise 
Geoff super loved this dish although the bulbous shape of the eggs had to be commented upon.  Seriously.  Egg balls.  That he could not wait to pop.  The dish was ultra simple looking, but he loved the flavors of it all.  Traci tried one bite of the hash and said "that is awesome."  That's the kind of stuff you like to hear.
We all loved the space and our food.  Granted, the meal is a touch more expensive than other brunch spots, it is not terribly moreso.  I am interested in trying out their porchetta sandwich on another occasion (mmmfattypork) and other hearty fare, so I will have to make a return visit.  I'm a sucker for a restaurant with a nice ambience! 

All in all, I'd probably take out of town guests here, if given the chance.  (I mean.  After I take them to Clinton St, Shopsins and Egg.  Haha.  The Han breakfast hierarchy!) 

377 Greenwich St
(corner of N.Moore and Greenwich)
New York, NY 10013
ph: (212) 925-3797
Locanda Verde on Urbanspoon

*10:15 is an ungodly early hour in NYC brunch times - usually deadville and guaranteed entry to any restaurant, including Shopsins!


  1. wow i am impressed with the sheepsmilk-ricotta-trying! and omg those pancakes look divine - that is a perfect combination of flavors ymmmmm...

  2. That ricotta is heaven, isn't it? While I love the food at Locanda Verde I feel like you pay a lot for not a lot of food and the service tends to be mostly indifferent. But that ricotta...