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Label Rouge Chicken at Il Buco Alimentari
Photograph: Virginia RollisonLabel Rouge Chicken at Il Buco Alimentari

Pig out at a sidewalk pork roast for Il Buco's 20th anniversary

By Rheanna O'Neil Bellomo
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After two decades on Bond Street, antique-store-turned-Italian-icon Il Buco will celebrate its anniversary with one of its famed sidewalk pig roasts—the first in four years—on Sunday, September 21. The East Village staple will also be bringing back a number of esteemed chef alumni for prix fixe dinners during the week leading up to the pork fête and we snagged an exclusive first look at a couple of the menus.

From Monday, September 15 through Saturday, September 20, chefs Jody Williams (Buvette), Sarah Jenkins (Porsena), Ignacio Mattos (Estela), Amanda Freitag (Empire Diner), Christopher Lee (The Forge) and Justin Smillie (Il Buco Alimentari & Vineria) will return to the Italian kitchen to churn out one-night-only menus alongside current Il Buco head chef Joel Hough. Dinners are $125 and start at 7:30pm each night, with an aperitivo hour of wine and cicchetti from 6–7pm for an extra $50.

At Sunday's pig roast from 1–6pm, tickets are $32 and include a plate piled with slow-roasted pork, porchetta panini, apple-pork sausage, pasta Genovese, and ricotta fritters—plus gratis wine and beer. The festivities will be capped off with a final prix fixe meal featuring Francis Mallmann and her new book, Mallmann on Fire. 

Here are two of the guest-chef dinner menus:

Tuesday, September 16 with Sarah Jenkins 

Hors d’oeuvres
Mini porchetta panini
Pomodoro frito with mozzarella
Cantaloupe gazpacho with crispy prosciutto
Oil-cured anchovy with white truffle butter crostino and shaved parmesan

Appetizers
Eckerton Farms heirloom tomato carpaccio with shaved bottarga di muggine and micro celery
Roasted cherry hots with Baccala Mantecato and parsley-caper salad

Pasta
Saffron pasta alla chitarra with ground duck, prosciutto and wild fennel-pollen ragu
Herbed ricotta agnolotti with fresh tomato

Entrées
Grilled Spanish mackerel with burst cherry tomato and lenticchie di Castellucio
Painted Hills tagliata di manzo with wild arugula and Mike Bishop’s 24 karat “golds”

Dessert
Crostata all Diavolo: sweet and spicy red pepper jam with vanilla gelato

 

Friday, September 19 with Christopher Lee 

Hors d’oeuvres
Mussels with almond butter and piment d’espelette
Fig anchoïade on toast
Chicken liver pâté on toast
Brandade fritters

Appetizers
Roasted stone fruit with house-cured culatello and fresh ricotta
Sauteed Georgia white shrimp and summer chanterelles with olive oil and 10-year agrodolce condimento

Pasta
Ravioli alla Genovese in brodo, with sweetbreads, marrow, and borage
Salt cod ravioli in saffron fennel brodo

Entrees
Grilled lamb cutlets with tomato, aubergine, and onion tian and herb breadcrumbs
Chicken breast and leg stuffed with prosciutto and wild fennel with long-cooked spicy broccoli rabe

Dessert
Local Strawberries and Rose Geranium Whipped Cream and crumbly fregolata

 

Ashley Cox contributed reporting 

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