Every week, I document another dish that impressed and satiated me during my food adventures around New York City

L'APICIO, 13 East 1st Street (between Second Avenue and Extra Place), East Village

I’ve always been of the mindset that a basket of bread should be included with your meal. Unless, of course, you’re eating at an Asian restaurant. But certainly at an Italian restaurant, some warm (or lukewarm – I’m not that picky) bread and butter (or olive oil is even better) should come with dinner.

As of late, New York restaurants have become more comfortable with charging for their bread basket. And I’m getting more frustrated with ponying up the cash for something that should be free. For instance, Il Buco Alimentari has some amazing bread with even more amazing olive oil, but it costs $1 per person. Sure, it’s just a dollar, but it’s the principle. And last time we went, the waiter brought the bread over automatically (without us ordering) and STILL charged us a dollar!!

But I have no qualms about paying for a morning pastry basket, as I did recently at L’Apicio, the newest Italian hotspot from the winning team of restaurateaurs behind L’Artusi and Dell’Anima.

On our recent big brunch outing, we couldn’t decide between their four tempting pastries to start the meal, so we saved some cash (you basically get one free with the $9 basket) and splurged on all four.

Pastry Basket at L'APICIO

The carb bounty consisted of two large slices of seriously hearty toasted bread, a cinnamony crumb cake, a wholesome lemon poppy seed muffin, and a decadently delicious rosemary-parmesan biscuit.

Honey and Rhuarb Butter at L'APICIO

If the large pastries alone weren’t enough, they were served with honey and a surprising rhubarb-compound butter. I almost forgot about the pastries and just put these condiments on a fork.

Morning pastries are a different scenario than rolls before dinner, sure, but if every restaurant was serving bread this spectacular, I’d be happy to pay for it. Heck, I might even skip the main course all together.

L’APICIO
13 East 1st Street (between Second Avenue and Extra Place),
East Village
(212) 533-7400
lapicio.com
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About the Author

Brian Hoffman is a classically trained actor who is now a full-time tour guide, blogger, and food obsessive. He leads food and drink tours around New York City, which not only introduce tour-goers to delicious food, but gives them a historical context. He also writes food articles for Gothamist and Midtown Lunch in addition to overseeing this blog and a few food video series, including Eat This, Locals Know, and Around the World in One City.

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