Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Dell'anima

Without a doubt, fall is just a wonderful time in New York. Being able to enjoy a meal outside without profusely sweating is one of the most welcoming changes to the season. And there are actually few things that can top sitting outside amidst a quaint west village block on a sunny, yet breezy September Sunday. Throw food in there and I am not going anywhere for several hours! Dell'anima allowed me to do all of the above and then some this past weekend. Brunch in the fall is one of my favorite weekend activities. It's a great way to catch up with friends, try a new restaurant or stop by an old favorite, and get geared up for an afternoon of football viewing or even street wandering - fall weather allowing you to pretty much do as you please.

I had enjoyed dinner at Dell'Anima several months ago and had recently noticed the packed outdoor tables at brunch time. Remembering how delicious the dinner was, I was eager to finally have a full weekend back in the city so that I could try out their daytime fare. I often feel that brunch can be the true test of a restaurant. Gaining a following in the evenings is one feat. But, as any Top Chef viewer knows, perfecting the egg is the ultimate one. Given that I was already completely content seated outdoors at the top of Bank St (a mere two blocks from home), Dell'anima did not have a hard task ahead of them. However, the minute they brought out lightly toasted Italian bread with a side of whipped butter drowned in honey and pine nuts, I realized that the food might even surpass the amazing setting.

Brunch at Dell'anima is served family style - all dishes arriving in large bowls made for sharing. Yes, this is possible for all meals - not just dinner! This is actually a great idea since it allows you to try up to six different items on the menu without feeling completely gluttonous. Just make sure you go with someone who has similar eating habits since you will be sharing all of your choices. If you really do have a tough time narrowing down the options, you can always order the entire menu for $18 per person or simply choose à la carte for $5 per item. Polishing off the bread and butter before even putting our order in, we decided to go with three items for $14. Luckily, I was with a friend who has great taste - and we were in complete accord on our three choices. We ordered the scrambled eggs, sausage patties, and broccoli rabe with hot peppers - and all were perfectly done. The eggs were far from overcooked and the broccoli had a great kick to it. But, (and this may not come as a surprise), the sausage patties were my absolute favorite part of the meal. It is hard to come by an authentic patty in this city - most restaurants only offering links. Not only did this sausage hold true to its form (they basically resembled mini hamburgers), but the flavors were amazing, reminding me of the patties down south. Cutting the sausage up and pairing it with a little egg and broccoli was actually the ideal bite.

Prior to this meal, my only complaint about brunch was that sharing is not involved. Dell'anima takes pride in their cuisine, recognizing that great food is most enjoyable when you can sample as many items as possible. Once it gets a little cooler and my appetite will naturally grow, I am eager to return and order the entire menu - and without shame. Family style does not mean the portions are too big. While the plates are large, there is only one of them per item! And, if the oatmeal pancakes and polenta are as flawlessly prepared as the items that we ordered, I just might be willing to spend the time indulging and forgo that extra hour of football.




Dell'anima
38 8th Ave
New York, NY 10014
Phone: (212) 366-6633
website

6 comments:

Micheke said...

"Great taste" thank you;) Great brunch, let's do it again soon. Until then I will read about your recommendations and do my best to give them a whirl!

bferry said...

you had me at "sausage patty." i'd like to reserve a time in october to order the entire menu with the hungry roach. can't wait.

Ashley said...

Wow Roach! i am now dying to go here!! it sounds like we have very similar pallettes! Cant wait to try their sausage patty, you just cant find a good one anywhere in the city...

Dell  3100cn toner said...

Oh My! Another one of these jaw dropping stomach hunger craving pages! Whether it's the pics or the wording that was put together oh so well just to explain the juicyness of the food, It Sounded Gooood To Me :) and with that in mind I think we should all have a moment of silence and really think when we can take a trip down the best place to eat in your town or at a vacation getaway!
Well, let me know what you guys think because I am surely ready to enjoy a national tour of foods:)! Thanks for the info!

HP Inkjet Cartridges said...

This has given me food for thought, Thanks for taking the time to outline it so well...

printcountry coupon said...

Saving this to my reading list (you gotta love the new Safari feature on iOS 5!). Great post.... P.S. Happy Friday, everyone :)