Amali

I came upon this restaurant quite by accident – it was approximately my 9th choice for dinner that day, but due to scheduling conflicts, this is where I landed. Tucked on a quiet street in Midtown East is a Mediterranean/Italian fusion restaurant. I must have walked past it numerous times. Most of the foods are rather ordinary, but a few pasta dishes are stand out, and mixed in with a few fun appetizers, it would make a great summer meal.

You walk downstairs past this small seating area that looks like the tiles in my new bathroom to reach a quiet dark bar.

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Then in an adjacent room, is a beautiful sunroof. You should definitely request to sit in the naturally lit room if you visit.

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This kind of space is so rare in New York City.

We started off with almost every appetizer on the menu… twice.

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Farro Salad: 6/10 Very clean tasting. Could have used some more greens.

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Buffalo Mozzarella: 8/10 Very fresh for a buffalo mozzarella! I almost filled myself up here until I heard that we were going to be ordering for 20 (at a table of 6)

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House made lane: 6/10 That’s referring to the bread, not the balls. The balls are not falafels, they are soft (goat?) cheese.

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Charcuterie: 4/10 meh. nothing new

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Spanish Octopus: 6/10 Didn’t taste very spanish, and the octopus was well cooked. But I found it for lack of a better word… ordinary.

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Grilled Flatbread: 8.5/10 Excellently flavored. The soft cheese on top was melting on the roof of my mouth. The dough was perfectly chewy and soft at the same time.

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Eggplant special: 7/10 This was very spanish and flavorful and good. I wish I had saved some of the labne to dip into the sauce!

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Falafel: 6/10 Very ordinary

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Linguini Vongole: 4/10 Way. Too. Garlicky.

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Spaghetti: 6/10 The sauce stuck to the pasta well, and it was very slurp able. However, it lost some of its luster next to the other 2 superstar pastas.

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Pappardelle Bolognese: 8.5/10 This is a very common dish in NYC, and I usually don’t get it, but I am so glad that I got this. The meat was tender, the sauce was not too salty, and everything about it was near perfection. The sauce was creamy but did not feel heavy.

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Corn Agnolotti: 9.5/10 If you like sweet corn, get this pasta. The sweetness of the corn is paired nicely with the earthiness of the mushroom sauce that likely wrapped around each agnolotti. I am drooling onto my computer as I type.

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The sides for the main were oily

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Ribeye: 6/10 This ribeye that seemingly came from a brachiosaurus tasted amazing at the restaurant, but when I looked at it the next morning, I noticed that it was unusually fatty with a lot of gristle. So it has been downgraded. The sun had set by the time we got to this dish, so it looks far more attractive in the photo than it should.

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Whole fish (sea bass)? 5/10 Like all grilled fish I’ve ever had, it was a little too dry and lacking in flavor.

We then had a whole slew of desserts, but I cannot remember any of them. I had one too many of the cocktail called naked on a something or the other.

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But I do remember enjoying the one that looks like a funnel cake and the sorbet.

Overall the ambiance was amazing. The food was varied but there were a few exciting dishes. It would be a fun place to go for an early dinner or lunch and just munch on the appetizers and pastas. I would pass on the mains.

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