A recent visit to Upper East Side’s Scalinatella proved to be an exceptional choice. Situated below ground in a remarkably transformed space, this was Italian food done just right. From the moment we sat down, to our leisurely exit, it was one spectacular and savory dish after another, all highlighted by exquisite service.
One important thing to note is that this was by far the longest and most significant list of specials that I have ever come across, so when your waiter approaches the table, be prepared to listen as the choices are lengthy and every one sounds better than the next.
We were fortunate enough to start off with a delicious antipasti plate consisting of Burrata (with tomato, basil oil and Holland roasted peppers), Crispy Artichoke Hearts (chopped tomato/olive oil salad), Zucchini Blossoms (stuffed with mozzarella and prosciutto w/ tomato basil sauce) and Gamberoni (roasted prawns, minced green pepper, sliced grilled zucchini). This was a cornucopia of delights and was efficiently devoured with splendor.
The Papardelle with Truffle Cream was an experience that I would like to relive on a daily basis and this alone is worth a visit to Scalinatella. However, the memory faded quickly with the delivery of the Veal Medallions (prosciutto, brown sauce, Fontina cheese) and the Oreganata style Chilean Sea Bass.
The finale in no uncertain terms, was the best Ricotta Cheesecake ever imagined—light, fluffy, perfection.
Freshness abounds in each and every dish and a beautiful wine selection highlights this intimate environment which is a magnet for those living in the neighborhood, business people and apparently the occasional celebrity as evidenced by Blake Lively sitting quietly at a corner table with a group of friends.
Scalinatella is located at 201 E. 61st St. (at 3rd Ave.)