Saturday, May 8, 2010

Downing Street Bar and Da Silvano

Mabel and I ate at Downing Street Bar and Da Silvano last night.

Downing Street Bar has been my favorite bar for a while. They have perfect cocktails, nice lighting, and good music. There's a small menu, but my favorite items are a foie gras terrine on perpetual special and their list of toasts which are triangles of nicely toasted, thick, chewy bread topped with things like smoked sturgeon or cheese and honey.

For dinner, we wanted to eat at a touristy outdoor place that we saw across the corner when we ate at Caffe del Mare, but it looked very unappealing up close.

We walked around a bit, saw open tables outside of Da Silvano, and ended up sitting in front of the Bistecca. They gave us Da Silvano menus. It was a lot of fun. The weather was just right, Silvano himself hung out on the sidewalk, and the waiters had a charming, insincere obsequiousness to them that strangely fit my mood. Mabel got Rigatoni Focaccia, and I got Taglierini Contadina. They were excellent in a way I don't know how to replicate. Maybe it was the cream. The last time I had pasta nearly that good was at Lupa several years ago.

When it came time for dessert, Silvano's genuinely warm brother-in-law came by to say that his mother made the tiramisu herself that day. It reminded me of Ed Levine's thwarted attempt to try Rao's cheesecake. How could we say no to that? But we were in the mood for Grom.

Blue Ribbon Downing Street Bar
34 Downing St (btn Bedford and Varick St)
New York, NY 10014
(212) 691-0404

Da Silvano and Da Silvano Bistecca
260 6th Ave (btn Bleecker and Houston St)
New York, NY 10014
(212) 982-2343

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