There’s a wonderful story about Rodin—that when his apprentices praised the hands on one of his sculptures, Rodin proceeded to hack them off. The piece was thus left handless, and declared finished. The moral? No single element should predominate. So it goes here, where the only thing that stands out is the seamlessness with which food, service, and ambience are integrated into a thriving whole. Yes, the pastas are both imaginative and fulfilling, but get a load of the wooden tables and chairs, the most handsome pieces of restaurant furniture in the area. And although the wine list is full of fascinating finds, the dark, laughter-filled room is its own narcotic. Some inconsistencies have cropped up of late, probably a function of the owners’ split attention as they debut another restaurant. We don’t foresee a long-term problem—the place has been too consistent for too long.
Don’t miss: Chicken-liver mousse; trout rillettes;fried Brussels sprouts; saffron paccheri; rigatoni with sausage; cavatelli with sauerkraut; porchetta; grilled short rib; sugar cream tart.