TravelNoise: The Sosta, New York City
The last word you’ll hear Italians describe their food as is quick. If you’ve ever had a true Italian meal, you probably already know that it took hours, maybe even days, to prepare. Though we can’t exactly shy away from that all-day-simmered sauce, we also can’t exactly say good Italian food is always slow-cooked. Our evidence? The Sosta.
Tucked away right outside the heart of Little Italy, The Sosta offers fresh, authentic Italian dishes that you won’t have to wait hours for. Consider it your one-stop casual shop for your next big carb-o-load or fancy brunch. When my guest and I arrived at the door during bustling dinnertime, we noticed immediately the clean and white colour scheme with fun, ambient lighting. My eyes went straight for the “Mangiamo, baby!” vibrant neon sign hung neatly behind the counter, where staff were ringing up orders.
The menu, like the restaurant, is visually appealing and offers a number of pastas, sauces, soups, salads and antipasti boards as well as freshly-baked cookies and gelato. On the weekends, the hot spot keeps the fun going by offering a specialty brunch menu including spaghetti carbonara, Nutella sandwich and brunch board. Oh, and the place even has beers, wines and spritzes. Yup, it’s a party.
We gawked at the selection before going up to the counter (you order at the front and staff bring your food to you) before asking for some serious help. Thankfully, our host pointed us in the right direction and started us off with the wine on tap ($6) and the arugula salad ($6). The salad, which included tomato, pecorino and a white balsamic vinaigrette, was refreshing and crisp — the perfect precursor to a ton of carbs. Then, we got the spaghetti pomodoro ($10) with garlic and basil, and the zucca vodka ($11), the sauce incorporating tomato, caramelized onion, vodka, cream, basil and red pepper. We asked for some chicken meatballs ($6) on the side, and we dug right in. The pasta was al dente and the sauces pure Italian gold, while the meatballs were juicy and flavourful.
Finally, we hit the motherload: the sosta mista antipasto board ($14). The board came packed with freshly baked focaccia, pecorino, giardiniera, focaccia pizza, salami, prosciutto and your choice of two out of the three spreads: truffle gorgonzola, eggplant caponata and pancetta onion jam. We have to say, the pastas and salad were great on their own, but we’d come back any day for this antipasto board. The meats were fresh and well-spiced, the bread was crisp on the outside and fluffy and warm on the inside and the spreads were to die for.
On our way out, we grabbed a few Italian cookies to go and even those tasted like they were just made (they probably were). And yet, we left within 20 minutes (we would have stayed longer, but we had to run…off the pasta). If you’re looking for something quick and honestly exceptional, The Sosta’s your only option. Trust us on this one.
Address: 186 Mott St, New York, NY 10012
Telephone Number: (212) 988-9028