My sister came to visit for a few days last month and I wanted to have a nice dinner in the city with my parents, so I made reservations one month in advance at Babbo, the ultra-popular Greenwich Village Italian restaurant owned by Mario Batali. I had been preparing my stomach all day for the Pappardelle Bolognese – wide, thin ribbons of pasta dressed with a delicious, rich bolognese sauce – and my stomach was not disappointed. This time, though, I was sure to save room for dessert. We decided to share the ricotta cheesecake with poached pears (the waiter’s recommendation) and the Chef’s choice of gelati and sorbetti (7 scoops for $12).
The gelati and sorbetti arrived on a platter with each scoop in its own miniature dish, like colors on an artist’s palette. Each scoop was delicately decorated with something indicating its flavor – a tiny slice of apple, a little drop of olive oil, a single grapefruit pulp. My personal favorites: the vanilla (I think it was vanilla – that’s what the waiter said, but it tasted faintly of cinnamon) and the grapefruit sorbet (I have a soft spot for grapefruit). Actually I really liked all of the sorbets – they all tasted exactly like the fruit – just a little more intense. The olive oil ice cream was also interesting – I’ve never had it before and it had a slightly citrus-y flavor. That was my mom’s favorite.
Yum, I wouldn’t mind getting a big scoop of the cinnamon-y vanilla flavor right now….
Here’s the rundown:
Babbo Ristorante e Enoteca
110 Waverly Place
New York, NY 10011
Hours: Monday through Saturday 5:30pm – 11:15pm, Sunday 5:00pm – 10:45pm
Note: Call one month in advance for reservations!