Italian On The Hudson

We’d heard good things about Il Sorriso (“the smile”) a while back. With all the restaurants coming and going, a reminder: Il Sorriso won Best of Westchester in 2010 for its oudoor seating (its “flower-festooned” patio offers a spectacular view of the Hudson), and Chef and Owner William Winstanley’s food sets it on the shoulders of dime-a-dozen Italian restaurants. 

Something unexpected came with the bread basket: a dip that looked like red bean but turned out to be a simple purée of red onion, balsamic and red wine vinegar, olive oil, salt, and pepper. We loved the lasagnette di melanzane appetizer, a noodle-less layering of eggplant and ricotta flooded with fresh tomato sauce and sprinkled with parsley, which could serve as a main course. The restaurant’s focal point, a wood-burning pizza oven, produces a light, slightly chewy crust. Fig jam, prosciutto, red onion, and goat-cheese pizza is a crowd-pleaser, but the Luca, with mozzarella, marinara sauce, red onion, and hot cherry peppers, beckons. Several pastas are homemade; tagliatelle with pancetta, mushrooms, and peas is hearty and delicious. And an unusual fish dish—branzino with cooked apples, raisins, and pine nuts—definitely, surprisingly, works. Lamb osso bucco is also a favorite here.

Absolutely save room for dessert! Homemade tiramisu and Italian (ricotta) cheesecake are as good as anything you might expect in an authentic corner of Little Italy, and you’ll be tempted by the ample selection of dessert wines.

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5 N Buckhout St, Irvington (914) 591-2525 | www.ilsorriso.com

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