Serafina in all its yellow-awning glory, will always be associated to me with moving to NY. Not only was it one of the first nicer Italian restaurants I been to when I moved here, its midtown location was always right next door to where I worked at the mags and where I live now too! But beyond what it represents in my mind, it’s an NY staple — a place frequented by celebs for its cozy corners and delicious food. (It’s no wonder when I interviewed Kim Kardashian, she said it’s one of her favorite restaurants in NYC!). When I was invited recently to their Upper West Side location for Italian Dine Out (Restaurant Week for Italian restaurants earlier this month — a three-course dinner is only $40), I brought my friend Mehreen along for a superb three-course meal, starting with their light and flavorful salads:
The Arugula e Parmigiano salad (baby arugula, cherry tomatoes and shaved Parmigiano, fig vinaigrette) is a crowd pleaser — simple and light. We munched on it along with fresh foccacia bread and extra virgin olive oil we got on the side. The chef then sent over their gorgeous seasonal salad (mango, chicken, and palmito…all good things!).
I ordered one of my favorite dishes, the Ravioli Alla Salvia (homemade spinach and ricotta ravioli served w/ butter and sage) and Mehreen when with their Tagliolini Con Petti Di Pollo (another homemade mountain of pasta with chicken, baby peas, mushrooms & a touch of cream).
What I loved about every course is the fresh and simple ingredients that marry so perfectly together so even the slightest hints of herbs like rosemary or sage come through in each bite. Just when we thought we couldn’t indulge anymore (“food babies” are starting to get a little more visible), we were presented with the dessert menu. If death by chocolate is a real thing, death by profiteroles has to be real too. Their profiterole are pastry balls filled with vanilla, chocolate, and pistachio ice cream, and doused with Nutella.
And, this is just me, but it’s really hard for me to leave an Italian restaurant without trying their tiramisu. There’s was soft, not too dry, not too wet, but just right:
A perfect ending to a perfect meal! While it’s not Italian Dine Out anymore, Serafina should top your list for a date (note: one who you really, really like), a business dinner, or maybeee to just catch up with your girl (hi, Mehreen!).
(at 77th Street)
New York, NY 10024
Upper West Side
Occasion: Italian Dine Out week
(Out of three stars)
Service: ***(Wonderful and attentive wait staff who didn’t rush our meal at all)
Would I go back?: Yes, and this time I’m all over their wood-oven baked pizzas!