It’s no small feat for a restaurant to stay afloat in New York City. With a competitive dining scene and new culinary concepts emerging at a rapid rate, Bottino‘s 21 years in the business is highly impressive.
Now after two decades in Chelsea’s gallery district, Bottino has renewed its lease, refreshed décor and brought on new executive chef/partner, Jamie Kenyon, to breathe new life into the restaurant. What will remain the same will be the focus on hospitality, appeal to the art world and the approachable Italian cuisine.
Bottino has a storied past with owner Danny Emerman and his partner, Alessandro Prosperi feeding the art world and attracting an A-list crowd since 1987 when they opened Barocco in Tribeca. Galleries eventually started migrating to West Chelsea so opening a second restaurant in that neighborhood was a natural progression.
With the help of gallerist Barbara Gladstone and German-born Brooklyn-based architect named Thomas Leeser, they found a century old hardware store on Tenth Ave and brought it to life with a clean and simple design, a contrast to their eccentric patrons. Bottino became a local hangout for dealers, artists, architects, musicians and fashion icons and was an integral part of maturing the neighborhood.
Though the classic mid-century modern design has been updated, it maintains its original aesthetic. When you first enter the restaurant, you walk through the cozy front room as you make your way to the back-dining area. To your left is a beautiful bar and directly across an expansive wine wall containing hundreds of colorful bottles of vino.
As you emerge in the back-dining room you are greeted by a surprisingly large space with wooden accents and re-upholstered burnt orange banquettes. The space is covered year-round and enclosed for cooler weather and available is a private enclosed East Garden dining room and a large interior private Pool Room. The ambiance is elegant without the air of superiority.
Executive Chef/Partner Jamie Kenyon is infusing new life into the menu bringing an impressive resume to the dining table. From Manchester, England, Kenyon began his career at Daniel, went on to Bar Boulud and was one of the first employees at Manzo (Eataly.) He puts his own twist on comfort Italian food infusing his English background into many of the dishes. He takes a fresh and creative approach while preparing the seasonal menus, often tweaking dishes based on his weekly shopping trips down to Union Square Greenmarket.
Kenyon also has delved further into the concept of using the whole animal using serving dishes like pork cheeks and oxtail. He continuously pushes the boundaries both in his cooking and his sous chefs when it comes to menu development.
Kenyon’s passion for Italian food and international fine dining is well represented on the menus. Chef himself recommended:
- Murray’s Burrata: A lovely presentation of fresh cheese paired with shaved squash, a puree of butternut squash, topped with pumpkin seeds.
- Honeycrisp Butter Lettuce Salad: Beautifully crisp butter lettuce arranged with a sense of architecture, honey crisp apples, honey shallot vinaigrette, stilton cheese, pomegranates for a tart bite and toasted walnuts.
- Tea-Brined Pan Roasted Baby Chicken: A generous sized, juicy chicken prepared in a tea brine and served alongside expertly cooked spaghetti and butternut squashes with chicken jus sauce and gaeta olives.
- “Smashed Potatoes”: Leave it to the Englishman to make a side-dish standout. Mouth-watering version of “chips” paying homage to the British dish; fried fingerlings layered in malt vinegar powder. Crispy on the outside with a burst of vinegar and a baked potato texture on the inside.
- Bavette CACIO e PEPE: A perfect Italian dish with its simple black pepper, black Pecorino Romano cheese and in-house made spaghetti.
- Bread Pudding with Ice Cream: Dessert is under the direction of both Kenyon and Annabel Sharahy (formerly Eleven Madison Park) and the warm bread pudding with a generous portion of ice cream is comforting for cold months.
246 10th Ave
btw. 24th and 25th Street
New York, NY 10001
Photos via Bottino and by Socially Superlative