Each Monday, we’re highlighting a bargain meal worth seeking out in this city. Most will feed you for less than $10.
It may be reasonably priced when compared to the rest of Michael White’s Altamarea Group concepts, but Osteria Morini (218 Lafayette Street, Nolita, 212-965-8777) is certainly not cheap. Dinner here can easily set you back well over $50 per person. Which is why you should take advantage of this Monday deal.
Starting after 9 p.m., Morini offers all pastas (excluding the risotto and lasagna) for just $10. What’s more, you get exactly the same size portion as you’d get any other day, which means that you can sample White’s handmade Emilia-Romagna fare for less than half the price — dishes usually go for $20 to $24.
So what, precisely, should you order? The spallina (regularly $24), a suggestion from the server, buys you double-ravioli filled with tangy squacquerone (a fresh cheese from Emilia-Romagna), rabbit, and porcini. Mildly creamy and slightly earthy, it’s delicious, but not the most satiating. It’s obviously intended as one course of several — not the best option for a budget meal.
The torcia (regularly $24) overshadows it. Squid ink pasta is tossed in a rich seppia ragù, made with cuttlefish, tomatoes, cream, sofrito, shrimp stock, white wine, and herbs. Finished with shrimp and brussels sprout leaves, it’s rich, complex, and gratifying. And it can easily constitute an entire meal.
Have a little money left over? The restaurant offers $7 glasses and $28 bottles of Lambrusco.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on October 20, 2014