When I heard about a restaurant opening in Gramercy that fuses Italian flavors with Japanese sensibility (read: plates that won’t leave you in a food coma), I knew I needed to give it a try. So the hubby and I headed downtown to Natsumi Tapas, a restaurant focused on small plates for grazing and larger plates for sharing, in typical Spanish tapas/Italian family meal style. With the lighter feeling of Japanese cuisine, of course. Pretty brilliant, right?
Like me, you may be wondering how exactly Italian and Japanese tastes marry together–seems like a bit of a strange concept for the palette, but I promise you, it’s a delicious pairing. There are many ways to experience Natsumi Tapas–pick your pleasure. Perhaps it’s the Natsumi Grilled Salmon with tomato sauce, olives, capers, scallions and bok choy, or maybe Ciao Meatballs are more your style–light and airy beef in a variety of sauces: parmesan cream, spicy teriyaki basil pesto, and spicy scallion marinara. For my fellow vegetarians, you’ll enjoy Green Tea Ricotta Flatbread covered with arugula, sliced grapes, tofu, king oyster mushrooms and a drizzle of truffle oil and balsamic reduction, or the Grilled Shiitake Penne with truffle cream sauce, rich and delicious with an interesting twist from the shiitake mushrooms–but still no where as heavy as a Penne dish you would find in Little Italy, promise.
The next time your hubby wants Italian and you want sushi, go to the place neither of you need to compromise on taste or quality: Natsumi Tapas.
Details: Natsumi Tapas is located at 323 Third Avenue at 24th Street, 1-(212)-889-2182, and is open Monday & Tuesday 11:30am – 11pm, Wednesday – Friday 11:30am – 12am, Saturday 4:30pm – 12am, and Sunday 4:30pm – 11pm.