Kate, Shasta, and I went to NYC for the beautiful wedding of Nicole. We had a few days there beforehand to explore. One of our first stops was, of course, Chinatown and Little Italy. There are hundreds of places to choose from for food, but the server that was outside talked us into this stopping at his restaurant called The Original Benito One on Mulberry Street. And I’m so glad he did. The decor was super cute. It reminded me of actually being in Naples. From a giant picture of a saint on the back wall to the wine placed throughout, it boasted a certain charm that the Italian restaurants in Cincinnati lack. The owner was sitting in a chair outside just observing everything and people kept coming up joking around and talking to him. You could tell this was a guy people liked. Even when he was talking to us a former employee came over and razzed him. Very fun and lighthearted feel which was different from the other places on the street.
We started off with wine (obviously!) and bruschetta. The Moscato was delicious, I wished I would have gotten the name, but the bruschetta was just ok. All you could taste was tomatoes and the juice from them. I would recommend a different appetizer.
But the entrees were delicious! I ordered the buffalo mozzarella ravioli. I’m not big into spice or heat, so I was worried, but this was PERFECTION. I ate every single bite. I wish I could bottle that sauce; I’d put it on everything. Kate’s Chicken Parmigiana was really good too and the portion could have fed a family of 5.
The food was great, the atmosphere and staff were excellent, and the prices were reasonable. I highly recommend you go there and will definitely be back next time I’m in NYC.
Oh- also the worlds best cannolis ever are on the same street. Check out Alleva. TO.DIE.FOR. We went back on our last day in the city and got 12. Then ate them all before we got back to Cincinnati. While you’re there pick me up some. They aren’t traditional Cannolis, but once you eat them you will never want a traditional one again.