Lucia's ricotta cavatelli

Restaurant Review: Lucia

Yes, you're still going to have to plan ahead to land a table. For good reason.

It still takes four to six weeks to secure a reservation at Jennifer and David Uygur’s 32-seat restaurant. They’ve added four bar stools inside and a couple of tables outside for in-the-know walk-ins and regulars. The masses wait for Uygur’s unique take on Italian food, a mix of Northern Italian cuisine and his own creations. The menu is small, but choosing what to eat is excruciatingly difficult. Recently I took two friends, and we ordered family-style: three antipasti, three small pasta selections, and two primi platters. It was a feast for the ages. Uygur’s selection of house-cured meats was a spectacular display, highlighted that evening with a spicy coppa, sopressata, chicken liver pâté, and Lucia’s signature n’duja. The rest of the meal was a blur—soft shell crabs topped with fresh greens and chilies; ricotta cavatelli swirled with broccoli rabe, fennel, corn, and a mild Italian blue cheese; ravioli stuffed with smoky rabbit sausage; a seared then sous-vide-cooked pork chop finished with anchovy, garlic, and peppers. There was wine—$50 for a lovely bottle of light and citrusy Malvira Roero Arneis 2011—and a semifreddo filled with toasted nuts and fresh berries, delivered by friendly and professional servers who ooh and aah over the food they serve just like the diners.