First Taste: Insieme


The best lasagne in New York is now being served on Broadway. It is, all by itself, reason to visit the new Insieme, which has set out to answer the following question: Can a downtown chef open up a good restaurant and make it on the Great White Way? Marco Canora is one of the city's most talented chefs. He left Craft (he was executive chef) to open the amiable Hearth on 10th Street, where an Italianate menu based on local, seasonal ingredients (along with an inspired wine list) gained an instant following. Now he and his partner, Paul Grieco, have carved out a sleek, modern room in the Michelangelo Hotel. The menu offers classic Italian dishes on one side, among them a very brave fritto misto featuring a remarkable amount of offal, a very rich spaghetti with clams, a restrained cacciuco, and, of course, bistecca fiorentina. On the other side are Canora's contemporary riffs, including crudo (Italian sashimi), risotto with sea urchins, black olive fettuccine with duck ragu, and Tasmanian king salmon. The wine list is still in its infancy, but it's already clear that it will be worthy of the one at Hearth. Although the place is only a week old, those of us who work nearby are already celebrating. We need another good restaurant in the neighborhood. I'd say go now; reservations are going to be hard to get. (152 W. 51st St., 212-582-1310)

Subscribe to Gourmet