Cafe Reggio is said to be the oldest coffeehouse in Greenwich Village. Dating back to 1927, history seems to have trapped itself in the sometimes claustrophobic dimly-lit cafe.
The restaurant is decorated heavily with Renaissance art paintings. At the far back of the cafe sits the monstrous original espresso machine, which I learned later was once the pride and joy of the original owner, Domenico Parisi, who was said to not let anyone operate it but himself.
The Italian dishes are pretty standard, but the great thing is the portions are just right without going overboard, and the prices are very reasonable.
My favorite is the Ravioli Pesto ($5.50), which always does the job filling me up.
The Pasta Campagnola with sauteed zucchini and garli is also really good — add chicken for an extra $2 because it’s worth it.
And if you visit Reggio, you have to get a coffee drink. I ordered a latte on my last visit and it was divine.
Restaurant Info: Cafe Reggio
119 MacDougal Street
New York, NY 10012
btw Minetta and W. 3rd St.
While in Chicago recently, my friend Katie and I did brunch at Orange for the first time.
Apparently, brunch foods are this restaurant’s specialty, which is a mini-chain throughout chi-town.
I tried the French Toast Kabob, which is a coconut-infused toast skewered with fresh strawberries and pineapples, topped with honey and served with coconut-mango salad. Sounded enticing enough.
French Toast Kabob, $8.95
French Toast Kabob
A+ for presentation, but the taste with the sauces was too citrusy for toast I thought. It was also an odd texture — I wasn’t loving it.
Katie got the Veggie Sandwich, which is served open face on thick-sliced brioche bread, and stuffed with grilled eggplant eggplant, carrots, potatoes, red peppers, zucchini and caramelized onions.
Veggie Sandwich, $8.95
Again, looked beautiful, but kind of hard to eat and pretty bland overall.
After our underwhelming lunch, we decided to go around the corner TO Iguana Cafefor some coffee and more treats. Because when people are with me, I force them to keep eating.
Chocolate chip cheesecake
We decided not to get too experimental this time and ordered a cheesecake — because really, who can go wrong with cheesecake, especially one drizzled with chocolate chip yumminess. And yea…eating that with a way-too-generous sized cup of chai latte, we definitely felt the food coma kicking in soon after.
One out of two aint so bad.
Restaurants Info: Orange
730 W. Grand Ave
Chicago, IL 60654
517-19 N. Halsted St.
Chicago, IL 60622
(Seriously, I don’t know why I’m always in Chelsea these days either).
I was desperate for some girl time, and when I called up my friend Shahla for a quick afternoon bite, she suggested we take it to Cafeteria. This place is open 24/7 and specializes in comfort (read: so bad for you yet so good) food.