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

Before this year I had been to Arthur Avenue in the Bronx a couple of times. But since we launched the Arthur Avenue food tour, it’s like I have moved in. And maybe I should because rent is much cheaper up here.

The tour was designed by a couple who are very familiar with the neighborhood, but now as research, I have to broaden my knowledge and eat at as many spots as possible. And there are a lot of them. Poor me.

Many of these sit-down restaurants have an old-world feel with a faux fine dining ambiance – white table cloths, coat racks, etc. But when you come in and look at the prices on the menu (especially at lunch), you’re shocked at the affordability. This is definitely not Manhattan.

If any restaurant has justification for hiking the prices it’s the Michelin-rated restaurant in the neighborhood. Tra Di Noi is owned by acclaimed Roman chef Marco Coletta who is newer to the area than some of the third-generation businesses, but has been hugely embraced by lovers of fine food. 

It’s hard for me to resist classic lasagna when I find it on the menu and I’m so glad I gave in. Although the people I was dining with all ordered something else and they all seemed equally as impressed as I did, the lasagna was out of this world.

The amazing thing about this lasagna was how richly flavored it was yet it also had a surprising delicacy. The thin pasta layers were masterful with just the right amount of cheese and the meaty bolognese was hearty without being a full-on gutbomb.

Imagine that: a refined red sauced lasagna in a classy restaurant nestled in the Bronx that most Manhattanites have never heard about. And now that I’m up here so often, my guess is this just the first of many discoveries like this. Price: $13.95 (lunch)/$17.95 (dinner

TRA DI NOI
622 East 187th Street (between Hughes and Belmont Avenue),
Belmont, Bronx
(718) 295-1784
tradinoi.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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