Saturday, March 22, 2008

homecomings, pt. 1

Last year, I wrote about returning to Piccolo Angolo after a long absence. Rather than leaving things to chance this year, my friend Amy made reservations a couple weeks in advance for dinner on the day Banana and I would get in town.

When Banana and I got to the restaurant early—a shocker for anyone who's known me long enough, Renato gave us our choice of tables. The head waiter shook my hand. Renato fawned over Banana, and his daughter was over in a minute to talk to her. She reiterated that we should move back to the city so Banana could grow up in New York. A bottle of wine arrived. Soon enough, Amy and Victoria had arrived, and the treatment continued. Pasta for Banana arrived soon, so did a heaping basket of bread. The Tre Colore salad, when it arrived, had grown since the years I spent regular time at the restaurant—not necessarily a bad thing.

Not long after Anna finished her pasta, her dessert appeared—chocolate gelato. When the rest of us ordered dessert, Renato decided we needed his tiramisu. It was lighter and more fluffy—not nearly as sweet—than any I've ever had. The fresh berry cheesecake was also a revelation—and a double helping.

In the end, as always, the return meal at Piccolo was the best possible welcome back to the city. Stay tuned for comments on MoMA, falafel, more food, and parents in Brooklyn.