Del Posto is an exciting collaboration between restaurateurs Lydia and Joseph Bastianich and Mario Batali that in 2010 received a coveted 4 stars from the New York Times. DP is the first Italian restaurant to receive 4 stars from the Times since 1974. This was as near a perfect dining experience as I can remember.
The space is huge at 24,000 square feet…..and dramatic….with soaring ceilings, marble columns and a central staircase leading to the balconies. But soft lighting, candles, area rugs and piano music transform even this vast space into a warm and cozy haven. The stage could not be better set for what is to come.
Del Posto describes its menu as “the concept of trans-generationalism which manifests itself in a cuisine that combines the creativity of contemporary culinary sensibilities with the powerful draw of classic Italian dishes…….(it) represents the food that Italians still eat”. Unlike so many restaurants of this caliber, it is utterly unpretentious.
Seldom have I eaten a meal in which each course was such a revelation. Abalone (no one has this anymore) carpaccio with grilled asparagus and young ramps, handmade orecchiette with lamb shoulder sausage, crispy morels and minted soybeans and wood-grilled lobster with artichokes, hazelnuts and basil. This is exciting dining where the anticipation of what is to come is only rivaled by the satisfaction of what has come before.
For dessert the flavor parade continues with items a chocolate ricotta tortino, with toasted Sicilian pistachios and extra virgin olive oil gelato or a selection of cheeses like robiola due latte bosina, Piemonte 40 day, eggplant crostata and chocolate or my favorite four chocolates and four rums.
The wine list is remarkable both for its depth (some 80 pages) and understandable Italian focus but also for the surprising number of bottles under $100 and even under $50. Finally, a premier restaurant that doesn’t gouge on the wine list!
To say that the service was near perfect would be an understatement. It was not overpowering, there was not someone hovering around the table at all times. What it was was seamless…the wait staff seemed to float around the room. They appeared when you needed them and then retreated when you didn’t. It may have been the best service I have ever experienced.
WHAT OTHERS SAY…
AAA Five Diamond Award
Forbes Five Star Award
New York Times 4 Stars
Wine Spectator Grand Award
“Hard to top”, this “magnifico” Chelsea Italian showcases the Batali-Bastianich “magic” with “inspired” cuisine and an “extraordinary” wine list in a “glamour palace” setting where “gracious” servers leave you “feeling totally pampered”; just expect to “spend a whopping amount”, or try the lunch prix fixe for “a true bargain.” ZAGAT