Longtime restaurateur and chef Nick Accardi has debuted his latest venture, an Italian restaurant called Tavolino, in Hell’s Kitchen. Meaning “little table” in Italian, Tavolino is a spin on his beloved Tavola, the always-packed regional Italian trattoria nextdoor. This stretch of Ninth Avenue was once lined with Italian-American establishments, and with the opening of Tavolino, Accardi is keeping the past in the present.
Highlighting his fresh and authentic approach to Italian cuisine, Accardi has introduced a variety of Roman-style pizzas to Tavolino’s menu such as Puttanesca Piccante (gaeta olives, capers, anchovies, pomodoro, sharp provolone), Medina (Turkish figs, aged balsamic, gorgonzola dolce), and Parma (classic margherita, prosciutto di parma, parmigiana). The menu also features a selection of crostini including Burrata Pesto, Porchetta Calabrese, and White Anchovy with Olive Tapenade, along with antipasti such as Tuscan Chicken Liver Pâté and Grilled Portuguese Sardines. Pasta dishes and entrees include Lasagna Del Casa with fresh pasta and veal meat sauce, Wild Mushroom Ravioli made cacio e pepe style, Chicken alla Romana with fresh artichokes, lemon, capers, and summer herbs, and Shrimp Positano with jumbo shrimp, roasted garlic, heirloom tomatoes, fresh herbs, and yukon gold potatoes. Accardi is also putting an emphasis on dietary restrictions by offering gluten-free substitutions for all pizzas and pastas which will be prepared in designated cooking areas.
Crafted by General Manager Abraham Isseks, the cocktail menu incorporates Italian ice from Accardi’s pizza shop, Vito’s Slices & Ices, with drinks like the Dark Cherry Fara with Town Branch Bourbon, fresh lemon, simple syrup, and a scoop of Vito’s Cherry Ice, and the Limoncello Martini featuring Grey Goose, homemade limoncello, and a scoop of Vito’s Lemon Ice. There is also a variety of negroni including the Sicilian Negroni with Bombay Sapphire Gin, Campari, and blood orange juice and Pretty in Pink with Ha’Penny Rhubarb Gin, Campari, and Martini & Rossi Vermouth. A selection of Italian wine and beer is also available.
Tavolino is set in a casual, rustic atmosphere featuring exposed brick walls and wooden furniture with forest green and dark red accents. The dining room has comfortable booths, high-top tables, and a 12-seat bar with alternating green and red stools. Decorations such as bottles of Aperol can be found on shelves throughout the restaurant, and for even more Italian pizzazz, a variety of cured meats and whole cloves of garlic hang from the ceiling.