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Lupa Osteria Romana

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Seriously, maybe I'm some kind of alcoholic, but who has only one glass of anything with a mea?[...]

I think a lot of people do. I certainly have been known to do so.


Michael aka "Pan

 

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Seriously, maybe I'm some kind of alcoholic, but who has only one glass of anything with a mea?[...]

I think a lot of people do. I certainly have been known to do so.

Actually, me too. I never have more than one glass of wine with breakfast.


Rich Schulhoff

Opinions are like friends, everyone has some but what matters is how you respect them!

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I was part of a party of two at Lupa for a late dinner tonight. Our waiter was superb, but this was certainly the weakest meal either of us has had at Lupa. None of the dishes was more than good. We found the beets with pistachios appetizer enjoyable; the cacio e pepe good but a bit oversalted, with the pasta perhaps a bit undercooked (and we like our pasta al dente, but this was a bit raw in the center, though I found that OK); the skate and broccoli orecchiete, a special, was pleasant, with a spring-like taste (my dining partner at first found it fishier than he was expecting or prefers, but got used to it, though he did suggest that this was an example of a special created to use up old fish); the three beans contorno with mint just OK and again a bit oversalted; and the Tuesday duck special disappointing, with a red bell pepper sauce far inferior to the lemon sauce in a previous incarnation of this dish, and some of the duck meat stringy and dry. My dining partner bit down on a piece of skate bone that wasn't supposed to be in the orecchiete and hurt his teeth some, an unpleasant experience to be sure. A man in chef whites who I believe was the Chef de Cuisine came to our table to apologize and say that they check for bones carefully and this should never happen, which I thought was a very nice gesture (just as a point of information, I will note for the record that my portion also had a small bone in it, undoubtedly a hazard in ordering a sauce with a fish component). When the waiter came over to ask how the duck was, we told him it was OK but explained what disappointed us about it. He offered to bring a different dish for us, which astonished me because we had already eaten more than half the duck. In the end, we decided that we were too full to take him up on his offer. Our dessert of tartuffo seemed to me to be the same high quality as usual. The orecchiete were comped on the check, and we left a large tip for the waiter.

Lupa obviously remains a restaurant where the staff try hard to please patrons, and I certainly appreciate that. But it occurred to me that I have had many better meals at restaurants like Col Legno and Bianca than I had at Lupa tonight. Our meal was not bad, to be sure, but I'm not used to thinking of Lupa as a "not bad" restaurant. I hope that tonight was merely an off night. It is likely that I will try Lupa again, but I think that the next time tonight's dining partner is back in town, we will be going back to Hearth instead of Lupa.


Michael aka "Pan

 

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I have reservations in two weeks so I hope you just hit them on an off night, as I have never had a bad meal there. However, Mark Ladner, formerly the chef at Lupa, is now at Del Posto. I have been wondering about attrition in the growing Batali empire. As chefs move through the ranks their replacements have to be just as capable in order to maintain standards.

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Went to Lupa for lunch this week, unfortunatly my 2 yr old son who should have been napping wasn't and it cut my meal way short. What I did have, gnocci with sausage was very good. I will have to go back solo and have a full meal.

The highlight though was their on tap beer. I wanna say Morelli. Does anyone know if that's it, I can't find it on the website? Know if I can get it in bottles in NYC.

-Mike


-Mike & Andrea

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The highlight though was their on tap beer.  I wanna say Morelli.  Does anyone know if that's it, I can't find it on the website?  Know if I can get it in bottles in NYC.

-Mike

I think it's Moretti - should be available at places that have decent by the bottle selections. The Indian-ish spice market on 1st Avenue between 5th and 6th Streets (I want to say Dawal, but not sure) carries a huge selection of bottled beers - and is a great resource for hard-to-find, super fresh spices as well.


Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

mweinstein@eGstaff.org

Tasty Travails - My Blog

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Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

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The highlight though was their on tap beer.  I wanna say Morelli.  Does anyone know if that's it, I can't find it on the website?  Know if I can get it in bottles in NYC.

-Mike

I think it's Moretti - should be available at places that have decent by the bottle selections. The Indian-ish spice market on 1st Avenue between 5th and 6th Streets (I want to say Dawal, but not sure) carries a huge selection of bottled beers - and is a great resource for hard-to-find, super fresh spices as well.

Moretti, that's it, thanks Weinoo.


-Mike & Andrea

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The highlight though was their on tap beer.  I wanna say Morelli.  Does anyone know if that's it, I can't find it on the website?  Know if I can get it in bottles in NYC.

-Mike

I think it's Moretti - should be available at places that have decent by the bottle selections. The Indian-ish spice market on 1st Avenue between 5th and 6th Streets (I want to say Dawal, but not sure) carries a huge selection of bottled beers - and is a great resource for hard-to-find, super fresh spices as well.

Very close. That would be Dowel, and it's owned by Bangladeshis.


Michael aka "Pan

 

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Had a very nice meal at Lupa last night...started with the bucatini, finished up with the sweetbreads, too full for dessert! :raz:

However, we showed up at nine, put our names in for a table, and were told it would be 45 minutes' wait. Ended up being two hours.

I have no problem waiting two hours for dinner, particularly when I wasn't too hungry when we arrived. I do have a problem with being told 45 minutes and THEN waiting two hours.

I wasn't too miffed about it (having been pleasantly surprised by the original 45-minute estimate), but my friends were pretty peeved and made it known to the hostess, who brought us free prosciutto. Personally, I think they should have bought the glasses of wine we had at the bar during our wait...anyhoo.

Food was solid, as usual. Service was attentive and friendly. But the hostess should give better estimates on times to get a table...the two people in my group of four who'd never been to Lupa before will probably never go back, which is a shame.


Edited by Megan Blocker (log)

"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

Queenie Takes Manhattan

eG Foodblogs: 2006 - 2007

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After many, many completely satisfying visits over several years we had our second or third consecutive disappointing visit to Lupa yesterday. Starters were fine (carciofi alla romana and the oxtail terrine salad), and my wife's ricotta gnocchi was as remembered from previous visits, but my bucatini amatriciana was a gluey, muddy tasting, brownish mess, with caramelized flavors that suggested the sauce may have scorched a bit at the bottom of the pot - no pork or chili flavors were in evidence (and I remember this dish being seriously spicy in the past).

As someone said earlier, the meal wasn't bad overall, but I've generally expected more than that from Lupa.

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Noise complaints aside I had a good meal at Lupa recently. I started with the Proscuitto that I found to be overly salty, but the Lingua was perfectly cured. Since the Carbonara was off the menu I decided to have the Spaghetti All’ Amatriciana, wonderfully spicy but the guinacle was a little tough. The star of the show was the Tuesday dish of crispy duck picture a Beijing (Peking) duck with more flavor. All in all a good meal, but maybe only few times a year or if I am in the area by no means a destination restaurant in my opinion.

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I just received an e-mail from Lupa in which they announced new hours:

WE ARE EXCITED TO ANNOUNCE OUR NEW EXTENDED HOURS

WE ARE NOW OPEN NOON TO MIDNIGHT

SEVEN DAYS A WEEK WITH CONTINUOUS SERVICE

FROM LUNCH TO DINNER.

I think this is very welcome news. There is nothing more annoying than loitering outside Lupa on a weekend at ten minutes to 5:00 PM when you are looking to walk in for a late afternoon bite and they have not opened the doors yet.

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I just received an e-mail from Lupa in which they announced new hours:

WE ARE EXCITED TO ANNOUNCE OUR NEW EXTENDED HOURS

WE ARE NOW OPEN NOON TO MIDNIGHT

SEVEN DAYS A WEEK WITH CONTINUOUS SERVICE

FROM LUNCH TO DINNER.

I think this is very welcome news.  There is nothing more annoying than loitering outside Lupa on a weekend at ten minutes to 5:00 PM when you are looking to walk in for a late afternoon bite and they have not opened the doors yet.

That's awesome. Will be great for mid-afternoon lunching in preparation for late dinners or early movies...sweet.


"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

Queenie Takes Manhattan

eG Foodblogs: 2006 - 2007

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Had dinner at Lupa last night...started with shaved brussels sprouts and pecorino as well as an affetati piccolo (including tongue and testa - yum). For our mains, both my friend and I ordered the special crispy duck over castelluccio lentils.

With a cocktail and two carafinas of rosso, the total was $100.

Food and service were both excellent...I think Lupa has survived Marc's move quite well!!


Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

mweinstein@eGstaff.org

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

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Had dinner at Lupa last night...started with shaved brussels sprouts and pecorino as well as an affetati piccolo (including tongue and testa - yum). For our mains, both my friend and I ordered the special crispy duck over castelluccio lentils

With a cocktail and two carafinas of rosso, the total was $100.

Food and service were both excellent...I think Lupa has survived Marc's move quite well!!

Dinner at Lupa 4 nights ago. I had the brussel sprouts as well. Tasty, but I'm not a fan of large quantities of raw veg. Had the affetati as well. Delicious. I loved the clove scent in the head cheese. I loved the rustic presentation.

Breasola (sure i spelled that wrong) was the best I have ever had. Herbacious, sweet and sour, and tender enough to eat with a fork. Gnocchi was excellent.

Lupa is consistently one of my favorites.

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Seriously, maybe I'm some kind of alcoholic, but who has only one glass of anything with a mea?[...]

I think a lot of people do. I certainly have been known to do so.

Actually, me too. I never have more than one glass of wine with breakfast.

How very uncivilized.

I prefer a bracing cocktail beforehand, starting with a decent white (nice and bright, with good acidity) with the fruit, moving on to a decent Burgundy with the pancakes and sausages, with a light digestif afterward.


Mayur Subbarao, aka "Mayur"

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Lunched at Lupa this past Tuesday (and when the hell are they going to be done with the Houston St. project?). For a light lunch, we had a trio of shared antipasti - brussels sprouts were as good as always, assorted beans with cavolo nero was great, and cured/pickled whitefish was just pickly enough. I just really enjoy the use of the raw vegetables in these starters.

We opted for a couple of pastas as our mains - I went with the bucatini amatriciana, nice and al dente with some big hunks of guanciale, while my friend had the gnocchi with sausage. As close to Rome as you can get, without hopping an Al Italia jet. Not drinking any alcohol, we spent about $70...prices have crept up (a little more than $.03 since last year), but it's still a bargain on the NY dining scene for the quality of the food. And the current special on Saturday nights is lamb short ribs, which I must try.

This restaurant has certainly survived the chef moves, the opening of lots of other MB places, etc., and a lot of credit, imo, has to go to Jason Denton, who remains as hands on as ever...the service was excellent. There has also been a slight redo, with some new tables and chairs, along with some very subtle noise reduction techniques. Though not everyone gets it, it is one of my all time NY Italian favorites, for sure.


Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

mweinstein@eGstaff.org

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

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[bump]

Lupa: past its prime, or just under the radar compared to newer options?

I'm looking for an affordable place for 2 to celebrate a birthday. Salumi is a must.


Cooking and writing and writing about cooking at the SIMMER blog

Pop culture commentary at Intrepid Media

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I still love Lupa. It's not new but it's still damned good. And definitely not as expensive as, say, A Voce or Bar Milano.

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[bump]

Lupa: past its prime, or just under the radar compared to newer options?

I'm looking for an affordable place for 2 to celebrate a birthday. Salumi is a must.

there is some sentiment that it's not quite as good as it was now that Ladner is mostly over at Del Posto. but I'm not sure there's any way to be certain of it.

it's just under the radar cause of so many other things opening. still one of the best Italian options around...especially for the price. I'd think a birthday meal for 2 there is a great idea...and the salumi is always good.

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I don't think Lupa has past it's prime - while the earnest osteria may indeed have been ground-breaking for New York City, in that it tried, and succeeded, in bringing the Roman consciousness about food to NYers, it's also a timeless way of eating.

Buy food (raw materials), don't fuck it up by doing to much to it, and serve it at a profit was Batali's motto back in the day. And Lupa probably does the best job at that, of all the restaurants in the family.

Past it's prime - try getting a table any night at, say, 8 PM.

Now, however, for salumi, (and Lupa may have been the first curing their own in house) there's lot of other options, a subject for another topic, imo.


Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

mweinstein@eGstaff.org

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

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you know, one of the things that stands out about Lupa is that unlike, say, Babbo, the mains are highlights as well.

or put differently, it's not that the mains at Babbo are bad, it's just that they're not at the level (by and large) of the pastas and apps....while Lupa serves mains equivalent to the ones at Babbo...but for less.

for example, I'd put the apps and pastas at Babbo as being 9's or 10's and the mains around 7's or 8's. everything at Lupa is 7's or 8's....and they're priced accordingly.

edit: (this is based on a scale where the average NY Italian restaurant is serving 4's and 5's)


Edited by Nathan (log)

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another comment:

Lupa usually has a pork shoulder dish...but the preparation changes regularly. if they're doing the one with Apulian honey....well, I think it's fantastic. somehow avoids being cloying.

last time I had it, I thought the ricotta gnocchi was the best gnocchi in NY.

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Extremely helpful, thanks. I'll keep the res, and report after the meal.

I do love ricotta gnocchi/gnudi...


Cooking and writing and writing about cooking at the SIMMER blog

Pop culture commentary at Intrepid Media

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