Wednesday, April 13, 2011
Barbuto - Home of the Best Roast Chicken in the World
It sounds a little bombastic to deem something the "Best Roast Chicken in the World." My picture doesn't do it justice. It was dark outside and since Barbuto is essentially a large room with huge garage doors that open it to the sidewalks of NYC on 2 sides, lighting at around 8:30 pm wasn't so good. But my god, this chicken is fantastic. If you have ever heard of Barbuto (or its chef-owner Jonathan Waxman), then you have probably heard people talking about their version of roast chicken. It is listed as Pollo al Forno on the menu and simply described as "roasted JW chicken with salsa verde." The description doesn't do the chicken justice anymore than my photo does. The chicken is juicy and flavorful, plus the skin is perfectly crispy. Absolutely perfectly cooked. And the salsa verde is awesome. Did I mention that the portion is absolutely gigantic? The other food at Barbuto is delicious, but the chicken alone is reason enough to visit. We also tried a pasta dish of linguettine with Ligurian walnut pesto, chilis and breadcrumbs, roast cauliflower with pickled red onions, and a fantastic bruschetta with fresh ricotta, pea shoots and fresh peas. The bruschetta was the very best of spring on a plate. Oh and I can't forget the olive oil-almond torta with sweet ricotta and apricots. I'm not a huge fan of apricots, but this cake actually made me re-think that. It was such a satisfying meal on a warm spring evening.
Did I mention that as we were finishing up dinner we noticed that Nate Appleman was there eating dinner as well? I'm not going to lie. It was pretty cool to see him two tables over.