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23 Jun

Risotteria Melotti ti Amo

“One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.”

Virginia Woolf

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Its been a while since I’ve found myself surprised or intrigued by something new cuisine-wise. So it was quite a surprise when I found myself surprised and intrigued by something familiar- just taken to a level of flavorful nirvana not reached before.

Enter: Risotteria Melotti

Not just any trattoria, this Risotteria, is an authentic Italian ristorante that oozes familiarity and warmth, even though the basis of its inception (Italy) is somewhere I’ve never been.

Risotteria Melotti in New York is the dream of Guiseppe Melotti and his family, famous producers of rice in Italy. Risoterria Melotti offers a 100% gluten free cookery based on Italian Rice with a wide choice of risottos… the first Risotteria Melotti was opened in Isola Della Scala in Verona. Risotteria Melotti in New York repeats the same cookery of Risotteria Melotti in Isola Della Scala.

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The first dish contained several ingredients I wouldn’t normally eat… but when in Rome(-ish).

Our appetizer was the “crostone con fichi e tartufo”: toasted rice bread with home-made fig jam, monte veronese cheese, fresh black truffle shaved on top, and greens drizzled with olive oil.

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We each selected very different risottos to maximize our collective palette experience. The winning dishes: the “limone e gamberi” (risotto with shrimp, fresh lemon juice and white wine), and the “amarone e monte veronese” (risotto with amorone wine served in a crispy monte veronese cheese cup). If heaven had a flavor… it would be somewhere between those two dishes. True talent is the ability to take something ordinary and make it extraordinary, and Risotteria Melotti delivered.

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Alas! The pièce(s) de résistance! One of the perks of an entire restaurant being gluten free is the experience of closing my eyes and pointing to something on the dessert menu since nothing is off-limits and everything sounded delicious. Ari ordered the profiteroles, consisting of rice flower bignets filled with mascarpone, whipped mascarpone cream and topped with chocolate. I ordered the tiramisú. The first I’ve had in almost three years. I can confidently say: solid life decision.

Gabrielle Levy
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