Monday, September 19, 2011

Trē - New York

It pays to have friends in the city. Case in point, I can do hours and hours of research and I know that there are countless restaurants that I will simply never come across on my own. Luckily, a few friends of mine have done the legwork for me. That’s why, one Friday night, I was in a cab with Alex and Sarah on the way to, what looked like Katz’s Deli. When we did stop in front of the landmark delicatessen, I was surprised but even more so when we then walked past it, down Ludlow Street and finally ducked into a hole in the wall named Trē. Inside was the howl of air conditioners, the gale force winds of the fans, and the dull roar of a large crowd enjoying the wine bar.

Once we were seated, the candlelight atmosphere in this wine bar may have been quite romantic but it was frankly a pain to read the menus. However that minor annoyance quickly turned into indecision over what to order. Waffling between two fried appetizers, the arancini and the fried ravioli, I eventually decided to try the unusually stuffed fried ravioli.

With a filling of ricotta, salami, and black pepper, these raviolis had a wrapper oddly similar to a fried wonton. At first I thought I had received an odd order of crab Rangoon. However, there was a nice peppery bite to the filling that went particularly well with the few big chunks of salami. The drizzle of balsamic on top was a nice, tart touch that played quite well with the richness of the ricotta.

Despite an enticing selection of entrees, I was dead set on trying a pasta dish. Sarah and Alex had raved about the quality of Trē’s homemade pasta and I was keen on trying one out.

Pappardelle al ragu may seem like a mundane choice but this was a simple dish done well. The tender pappardelle was well matched to the meaty, smoked ricotta filled ragu. One pleasant surprise to the dish was that each bite was met with a hearty crunch of celery and carrots, an easy addition but they made the dish much more enjoyable.

There’s no air of pretention at Trē, instead it’s a close quartered, yet inviting atmosphere. The food, or what little I tried, was approachable, reasonably priced and quite satisfying. Looking at Trē’s website, you might think that the tagline of “Food. wine. friends.” may be a bit hackneyed but Trē, for me, certainly lived up to that claim. Sarah and Alex may have discovered Tre on opentable by accident, but their subsequent returns and my introduction were certainly on purpose.

Trē Address & Information

173 Ludlow St, New York, NY 10002 // 212.353.3353 // Trē Website // Trē Menu // Trē Reservations

Tre on Urbanspoon

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