Rafele

Photograph: Caroline Voagen Nels
Gnocchi at Rafele
West Village
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Naples-born Raffaele Ronca, formerly chef at Bellavitae and Palma, debuts his first solo project: a 70-seat, bi-level trattoria devoted to his Italian roots and adopted New York home. Ronca works local ingredients (Long Island fish, Ottomanelli grass-fed meats and produce from upstate's Blooming Hill Farm) into traditional antipasti, primi and secondi dishes. Take a seat at the Venetian-marble counter and watch him pull plates from a mammoth brick oven in the dining room, where terra-cotta floors and reclaimed wood outfit the space. The imported wood-burning hearth from Acunto, an esteemed Italian manufacturer since 1892, lends a smoky scent to most dishes on the menu, including a boneless roasted chicken accompanied by kale and ramps, a tomato-based zuppa de pesce and porchetta-style pork belly. Ronca also douses the wood with different spirits (brandy, grappa) to add an extra layer of flavor. Downstairs, a glass-enclosed wine cellar housing 70 European selections doubles as an intimate private dining room, with a 20-seat table crafted from old beams.
Venue name: Rafele
Contact:
Address: 29 Seventh Ave South
New York
10001
Cross street: at Morton St
Opening hours: Daily 5pm–midnight
Transport: Subway: A, C, E, B, D, F, M to W 4th St; 1 to Houston St
Price: Average main course: $24. AmEx, MC, V

Average User Rating

5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:2
  • 4 star:0
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|2
1 person listening
olga consalvo

the food was just magnificent. I had baked chicken like I never tasted in my life. My husbank had pork chops and h e loved them, the rice balls, the mussels and I can go on and on. We met Raffaele and we will be back with more of our friends. The service was also excellent!!!

JB

This is the real deal folks. Rafele opened to the public last Friday and I have eaten there three times already. Every dish is wonderful. Prepared the Italian way; fresh and organic with lots of love, passion and presentation. Napoletano delight!