Armani / Ristorante, located on the third floor of Giorgio Armani’s New York flagship, is one of New York’s most under-the-radar fine dining Italian restaurants. The ten year-old restaurant is elegant and beautifully designed, with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the avenue, a sleek black and white color scheme, a long bar, and a seasonal menu of high-end Italian fare prepared by chef Michele Brogioni.
There are actually 19 Armani restaurants and cafes all over the globe, with additional Armani / Ristorante locations in Tokyo and Milan. In recognition of the brand’s global reach, from May 7th to May 12th chef Francesco Mazzi, from the Tokyo Armani / Ristorante, will be in New York serving a multi-course lunch and dinner set menu. Here’s the dinner menu, which we recently had the opportunity to try at the invitation of the restaurant:
Pea and Scallops
Crab with Fennel Panna Cotta and Lemon Jam
White Asparagus, Culatello, and Parmesan Zabayon
Pansotti Filled with Fiddlehead Fern and Sansho Pepper Butter
Wagyu Ribeye Roasted in an Herb-Salt Crust
Taleggio Cheesecake, Blackberry, and Maple Gelato
Italian Coffee and Petit Fours
The first course, “pea and scallops,” was actually a lemony, olive oil-drizzled scallop crudo between two thin and crispy pea crackers. The white asparagus were perfectly cooked (I’d even describe them as “juicy,”) and the dish was a very luxurious play on the traditional prosciutto-wrapped asparagus. Fiddlehead ferns were highlighted twice in the pasta dish, both inside the pansotti and lightly cooked atop them. The ribeye was perfectly cooked to medium-rare, so tender it no knife was necessary, and served alongside morels and spinach. And the cheesecake had a slightly salty note from the Taleggio added to the mix, and played nicely with the blackberry and maple.
The meal was an elegant way to welcome the flavors of spring, with seasonal all-stars peas, white asprargus, fiddleheads, and morels all making appearances. General Manager Alessandro Fagorzi guided the meal and chose creative and inspired wine pairings, geared toward lesser-known Italian varietals, to accompany each course. At $130 per person before beverages, tax, and tip it’s certainly a splurge, but it was a very impressive meal from start to finish.