Thursday, June 17, 2010
IL Bambino Restaurant Review
I am very excited to write this entry for Wine Tasters! My name is David, my wife is Angela and we live in Astoria, NY. Today I will be reviewing Il Bambino in Astoria, Queens, NY. Il Bambino is a Spanish/Italian trendy restaurant.I hope to be reviewing restaurants in Astoria and other New York neighborhoods in the coming months.
My wife and I arrived at Il Bambino around 7:45 PM. The temperature was 75 degrees and humid. Il Bambino has a backyard where you can eat. Because of the humidity we decided to stay indoors. When we walked in, the lights were dim but the staff attended to us immediately. The walls were covered with mirrors and wooden pigs, which is the Il Bambino theme. We were glad we decided to stay inside. The ambiance in the restaurant was fantastic. The restaurant was not crowded so we had our choice of seats. The menu was very simple to read and very descriptive. 1980’s and alternative music played in the background. We were now ready to order.
We first ordered the Cheese Plate – three cheeses for $10.00. Our choices were Manchego, Pecorino, and Gorgonzola Dolce.
The second round consisted of Red Pepper w/ Bacon spread with Stillman cheese crostini $6, Chick Pea Panzanella Salad w/ Feta Cheese - $8 and Fontina with Mozzarella, Pecorino, and Truffle Oil Panini - $9
Our choice of wine was a Jelu, San Juan, Argentina 2009 glass $8 | bottle $27, 100% Torrontes. The wine showed Honeysuckle and flowers with some minerality on the palate which was perfectly balanced by its level of acidity.
We first had the cheese plate and crostini.
Cheese Plate – Three Cheeses
The menu offers a choice of about 10 cheeses. The variety was good so the next time we head to Il Bambino, we can choose different cheeses to taste. The cheese plate was excellent. We also received Panini bread in small squares to put the cheese on top. The Manchego went well with the fig jam but disappointingly not the other cheeses. The Pecorino was sharp and tasty; very nice. I never had Gorgonzola Dolce cheese. I found the taste to be unique. The texture was creamy with hints of sweetness. However, you don’t get much for $10.
Next up was Stillman Cheese on top of Red Pepper w/Bacon spread Crostini
The crostini was spicy, a strong red pepper taste with a hint of bacon flavor. The color of the spread was orange. There was more spread then cheese which I was unhappy about because the cheese was awesome! I never had Stillman cheese before which was on top of the spread with a drop of balsamic vinegar on the cheese. Stillman cheese is a blue cheese but it is softer and less crumby than regular blue cheese. The combination with the crostini was great! The price of the crostini was $6. A little expensive but the quality of the crostini was excellent.
Now on to the Chick Pea Panzanella Salad w/Feta Cheeese
The salad came out with the dinner. My wife ordered the salad and she said it was very refreshing. The salad was a good size, not too big and not too small. The best part of the salad was the dressing. The dressing had a lemon taste which gave it that nice, refreshing sense. The combination of Chick Pea and Feta gave the salad a unique taste. Along with the fruit accents of the jello, it was an amazing combination. The two make an incredibly light and refreshing meal just on its own for a summer night. As with the other prices, $8 is a little expensive but was definitely worth it especially on a warm humid day.
And finally the Fontina with Mozzarella, Pecorino, and Truffle Oil Panini
This Panini was nearly perfect! The Fontina, Mozzarella, and Pecorino are a great combo. The cheeses are melted together and the truffle oil gives the Panini a special taste. The Panini is a good size and the amount of cheese in the sandwich is equally balanced. You can taste every cheese once you take a bite. The bread is toasted perfectly. The bread is toasted where it’s not too hard or burnt and compliments the texture of the melted cheese just right. The price is $9 which is not bad considering the size of the sandwich, which is quite generous.
Jelu, San Juan, Argentina 2009
I am not a wine drinker but my wife is. As previously stated, the wine partnered the Panzanella salad to a tee. Each element brought out the flavors of the other. The wine also complimented each one of the cheeses. This wine is all in all refreshing and compatible with quite a number of the meals on the menu! The price of $8 per glass is average for a trendy restaurant.
Overall the experience was great! We will definitely go again. I recommend it.
Scale 1-10 (1 is gross and 10 is stupendous)
Il Bambino Menu
3408 31st Avenue
Long Island City, NY 11106-1433
View Larger Map