Once a pop-up at local farmer’s markets, Cesarina’s owners, Giuseppe Scognamiglio, Giuseppe Capasso, and Niccolò Angius opened their brick-and-mortar establishment a mere six months ago, snagging CUCINA enoteca and The Smoking Goat alumnus Patrick Money as executive chef and serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The kitchen’s centerpiece is a pastificio, or pasta factory, where more than a dozen varieties are made, including rolled, stuffed and twisted shapes that you mix and match with eight or so different sauces and toppings including polpette, octopus meatballs, guanciale, and earthy porcini.
The Bucatini Amatriciana is a thick, hollow, spaghetti-like long pasta in fresh tomato sauce and a shower of guanciale croccante and Pecorino Romano, but the pasta/sauce/topping combinations are nearly endless. An array of antipasti, several specialty pasta dishes and chicken, beef or seafood entrees round out the bill of fare, and there’s a full vegan menu as well. Desserts include a novel twist on the ubiquitous tiramisu — it’s prepared tableside. Freshly brewed espresso is dramatically poured over three long, homemade ladyfingers, followed by big dollops of frothy whipped mascarpone and a dusting of cocoa. Extra points for service as warm and attentive as a nonna’s hug.
- "2019 Feast issue" · Aug. 7, 2019