Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Day 21, 2012: Il Baretto (Clinton, NYC)

DAY 21, OCTOBER 21st, 2012

LOCATION: Il Baretto (750 11th Ave., NYC)

ORDER: 2 slices of Original Pizza Napoletana

GUEST: Lance Kushner, Jorelle Aronovich, Cyrus Footman, Helaine Kushner

An appetizing appetizer.  Il Baretto is not a pizzeria but this quaint exposed brick Italian restaurant with a sidewalk cafe has pizza on the menu.  You will find it in the under "Snacks" listed just once with no topping choices as "Original Pizza Napoletana."  Il Baretto is correct on both accounts.  Not only does the pre-prepared pie of 8 small slices constitute the perfect snack to share but the San Marzano tomato sauce, diced basil and homemade mozzarella is very Neapolitan.  Some folks argue that the only authentic Naples pizza topping choice is "cheese or no cheese" (cite: Da Michele).  Furthermore, Italians tend to take the pie out of the oven sooner than Americans resulting in a softer, chewier, less charred underside.  Whether it is a symptom of being prepared elsewhere and reheated in a conventional oven or a deliberate intent to replicate the Italian way, Il Baretto's slightly undercooked underside results in the high quality ingredients providing the flavor.  When I return to Il Baretto, it will be for the attractive entrees I saw on neighboring tables but I wouldn't mind another slice to snack on while I wait for my main course.


 3.45 out of 5
  • VALUE:


  • TASTE:


14.5/21 = .690 * 5 = 3.45

1. Lance, Jorelle and I are the captains of our softball team, the Blue Balls, which played and won a walk-off victory 12-11 minutes before at Dewitt Clinton park directly across the street from Il Baretto.
2. Cyrus Footman beat out two infield hits fielded by opponents nearly 25 years younger than him.  He's quick.
3. Lance's mom, Helaine, is the Blue Balls #1 fan and hasn't missed a game all fall.

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