IL Tesoro Holds Court In An Iconic New York Space

IL Tesoro

IL Tesoro’s Beguiling Main Dining Room

IL Tesoro is located at 1578 First Ave. and 82nd St., New York, NY 10028. Open Sunday-Thursday 5-10pm, Friday-Saturday 5-11pm. For reservations, call (212) 861-9620 and visit www.iltesoro.net. The wine cellar room is available for private events and live music. At the start of warm weather, expect al fresco dining on the restaurant’s outdoor patio.


The Upper East Side. New York’s Newest Old-Dining Destination

il tesoro downstairs

Downstairs Wine and Event Room

Seasoned restaurateur and esteemed chef A.J. Black has taken over the Yorkville space that housed the legendary Primavera Ristorante, breathing new life into it with IL Tesoro, an innovative “new classic” Italian restaurant. Recognizing the eternal mark Primavera left on the neighborhood, Black took great strides to preserve its memory by restoring its original decor and revamping its bloodline, the kitchen. These changes have revived the space and recaptured the well-heeled Upper East Side crowd.

Black grew up in the family restaurant business and becoming a chef and restaurateur came naturally to him. He attended the Italian Culinary Institute and then took an internship at Rome’s Grand Hotel before later honing his skills at Le Cordon Bleu, where he trained under Paul Bocuse. At the age of 19 Black opened his first eatery, Café Roma, in the Laterno District of Rome, before coming to the United States and opening several restaurant ventures in New York and Florida. Today, Black’s restaurant group encompasses IL Tesoro Bistro and cafe Dolce Tesoro in Florida’s Sanibel Island, and IL Tesoro at the Terrace in Martha’s Vineyard, which was featured in Relais & Chateaux’s 85 Inspirational Chefs, among other prestigious toques, like Thomas Keller and Jean Georges Vongerichten.

Now with IL Tesoro on the Upper East Side, the bones of Primavera shine anew. Rich wooden panels and chic black and white French tapestry, lining the walls, adorn the interior. The space also sports elegant marble columns that match the intimate marble-topped bar in the front room. To add rustic warmth, Black illuminates the restaurant with delicate lights in antique sconces and urns bursting with exquisite flowers. In the basement you can see the centuries-old iron gates covering racks of wine bottles, a clever design that gives the space a wine cellar vibe, which, combined with a piano for live music, makes it perfect to host private parties.

Il Tesoro 2

As Good As It Looks: Carpaccio di Salmone e Tonno

Turning to the cuisine, Black—inspired by his gastronomic culinary background and childhood in Sicily—incorporates his “new classic” style of Italian cuisine to the menu, taking classic dishes and ingredients and using them in modern ways. With that concept the dishes pull you in, starting with appetizers like the thinly sliced Carpaccio di Salmone e Tonno, a fresh dish with sushi grade tuna atop North Atlantic salmon drizzled with a light champagne vinaigrette. A hearty Antipasto del Giorno consists of traditional antipasto nibbles like grilled eggplant and roasted red peppers, alongside artichokes and rotating cheeses, including a superbly creamy Gorgonzola and Parmigiano. On the hot appetizer side, the giant Scallops Antica stun with a dark, blood orange laden sauce, a perfect marriage to the shellfish’s sweet meat. Showing a bit of his modern side, Black deep-fries lobster tail and shrimp in the Agrodolce (Pictured Below), which melds lovingly with a sweet and sour sauce.

Il Tesoro 3

Lobster Agrodolce

Black also features tender Risotto Milanese along with the umami bursting Risotto con Porcini. Pastas include the decadent Paglia Fieno Trevisana, which whets the palate with a combination of white and green capellini in a lush truffle cream sauce with mushrooms, sweat peas, prosciutto and cheese baked on top. IL Tesoro’s Rigatoni Bolognese reaches the height of classic Italian and delivers it well using pulled, braised beef, a succulent tomato sauce, and perfectly cooked noodles.

If you seek the traditional Italian experience it won’t just be the white linen tablecloths that give it to you, main dishes including a braised Lamb Osso Buco with spicy eggplant sauce over risotto (Pictured Below) and the Scaloppini Favola, a veal dish with white truffle cream, will satisfy your craving. Black also serves sizeable plates of Duck Braciole, a roasted duck breast stuffed with spinach and smoky Scamorza cheese, with a Barolo wine and wild mushroom sauce..

il tesoro lamb osso bucco

For something really special, call in advance and order a Whole Animal Tasting or a seafood tasting dinner. We were delighted with Suckling Pig, as a pivotal ingredient for the four course feast. First Course offered Suckling Pig Confit Crostini  with Crispy pork belly topped with melted Scamorza cheese. This was followed by a Second Course of Wild Mushroom Ravioli, filled with Suckling pork tenderloin and chanterelle mushrooms in a heady white truffle cream sauce. The Third Course was the Roasted Suckling Pig in all its glory . . . moist within and topped with a crackling skin that melted in your mouth. It was served over risotto and finished with a blood orange and Cognac sauce .

For dessert, confections include Black’s Tiramisu, a variation on the classic dish that incorporates his own special liquor blend. Equally decadent is the silky white chocolate Crème Brûlée was as good, if not better than Le Cirque’s iconic version.

il tesoro dessert1

A Chocolate Fantasy

IL Tesoro’s wine program features an extensive list of reserve bottles, housed within the cellar, and include a Bruno Giacosa 2004 Barberesco and a Gaja 2006 Rennina. For the regular drink menu Black organizes his widespread bottle selection based on grape varietals and serves an ever-changing list of wines by the glass. Some you may encounter include reds like the prestigious Ruffino 2006 Chianti C. Riserva Gold L. and a woodsy Zenato 2008 Valpolicella Ripasso. Off the white menu, IL Tesoro offers a smooth and fruity Bertani 2010 Pinot Grigio and Sauvignon Blanc blend, a superb Bruno Giacosa 2010 Arneis ($70) and the crisp Cake Bread Cellars 2010 Chardonnay. There are lots of good bottles in the $40 to $70 range and a fine Perrier Jouet by the glass.

Add to this, some of the best martinis in town, lovely table and glassware and guiding, well-informed and nurturing service and you will realize that you needn’t travel below 23rd street to be rewarded with an exhilarating restaurant experience. The Upper East side, once a mecca of fine dining venues, is making a comeback. Try IL Tesoro and you’ll see what we mean.

 

Copyright 2012 By Punchin International. All Rights Reserved.

Disclosure

 

NEW YORK MENU

                                                  

Antipasto Freddo

Cold Appetizer

Carpaccio Toscana thinly sliced filet mignon dressed with olive oil, aged-balsamic, lemon, and capers served on a bed of wild arugula topped with shaved parmigiano
14.00

Carpaccio di Salmone e Tonno Fresh thinly sliced salmon and seared tuna topped with endives dressed with a olive oil, lemon, and champagne vinaigrette sauce. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.

.

Caprese fresh heirloom tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella, roasted red peppers, and baby greens with basil oil
15.00

Bruschetta Trio marinated artichoke confit, roasted eggplant, heirloom tomatoes and basil finished with Italian parsley served on a bed of mix baby greens
13.00

Pears Con Prosciutto red wine roasted pears with thinly sliced cured prosciutto finished with shaved grana padano
14.00

Antipasto Del Giorno grilled marinated vegetables, mixed cheeses, artichokes and cured meats
15.00

Frutti Di Mare mix marinated seafood served inside a chilled fresh tomato
16.00

Antipasto Caldo

Hot Appetizer

Scallops Antica seared scallops finished in a blood orange balsamic reduction over grilled radicchio
15.00

Vongole Cozze In Bianco clams and mussels sautéed with white wine, lemon and garlic
14.00

Lobster Agrodolce Sicilian rosemary sweet & sour lobster tail, fresh dill tomato salad
16.00

Polpetta Siciliana Sicilian-style meatballs sautéed in a spicy eggplant tomato sauce
14.00

Braised Oxtail served with creamy polenta finished with white truffle oil
17.00

Calamari Fritti fried calamari served with a spicy cherry tomato sauce
14.00

Bruschetta Quattro Formaggi parmigiano, Romano, gorgonzola and goat cheese over grilled crostini
14.00

Grilled Octopus marinated in a spicy vinaigrette served over fresh baby greens
13.00

Polenta E Gorgonzola sautéed mushrooms, finished with gorgonzola and white truffle oil
13.00

Insalate

Salad

Caesar fresh grilled bread, baby romaine heart and shaved parmigiano
11.00

Mista baby greens, roasted peppers, fresh tomatoes, and black olives topped with gorgonzola
10.00

Romana crispy pork belly and oven roasted artichoke hearts over fresh baby spinach and radicchio finished with a warm blood orange balsamic reduction
12.00

Rughetta wild arugula and slices of tomatoes in a light aged balsamic dressing finished with shaved parmigiano
9.00

Fresh Fish Of The Day

Risotto

Risotto Con Porcini sautéed with fresh imported porcini mushrooms, white wine and parmigiano with a touch of white truffle oil
24.00

Risotto Alla Pescatora sautéed with fresh seafood, lobster, clams, mussels, shrimp, calamari, scallops, in a white wine and fresh tomato sauce
29.00

Primi Piatti

Our Pasta

Spaghetti Frutti Di Mare fresh clams,mussels, calamari, scallops, and shrimp sautéed with garlic, olive oil, white wine, and fresh tomato
25.00

Pappardelle Con Porcini porcini mushrooms, garlic, olive oil, and finished with parmigiano and white truffle oil
23.00

Linguine Vongole fresh clams sautéed with white wine, garlic, olive oil, and crushed red pepper
22.00

Pasta Due fresh gnocchi quattro formaggi tartufo & spinach ravioli in tomato basil
20.00

Bucatini All’ Amatriciana new classic sauce of crispy guanciale, shallots, tomato sauce, & Romano
18.00

Spaghetti Bolognese classic bolognese meat sauce
17.00

Penne Arrabiata spicy roman tomato sauce
16.00

Tagliatelle Primavera vodka tomato cream sauce with fresh seasonal vegetables
18.00

Rigatoni Norma roasted eggplant, fresh tomato and basil
15.00

Fettucine Mare E Monti sautéed with Italian sausage, fresh scallops and sweet peas in a porcini mushroom, white truffle cream sauce
24.00

Cavatelli Pomodoro garden basil, garlic, and cherry tomato sauce
15.00

Linguine Scampi shrimp sautéed with garlic and olive oil in a pinot grigio wine sauce
21.00

Gnocchi Genovese fresh basil tomato pesto sauce with a touch of cream
17.00

Linguine Puttanesca black olives, capers, anchovies, oregano in a spicy tomato sauce
16.00

Entrées

Duck Braciola stuffed roasted duck breast with spinach and scamorza cheese served in a barolo wine, wild mushroom sauce served over risotto confit
29.00

Pollo Milanese Or Paillard breaded pan-sautéed chicken breast with fresh mix of baby greens, red onions slices, and heirloom tomatoes in an aged balsamic dressing
23.00

Involtini Di Pollo sautéed chicken breast rolled with spinach, pancetta and ricotta in a white wine mushroom sauce
25.00

Filetto Al Pepe Verde fillet mignon sautéed with a cognac and green peppercorn sauce finished with white truffle oil
32.00

Steak Toscana 22 oz dry-aged ny strip steak marinated in Italian spices and aged-balsamic with roasted potatoes topped with truffle butter
39.00

Lamb Osso Buco braised lamb shank in a spicy eggplant sauce over risotto milanese
35.00

Braised Short Ribs served with fresh gnocchi in a lightly caramelized leek sauce
32.00

Scaloppine Favola veal medallions sautéed with porcini mushrooms, white wine, a touch of cream, and white truffle oil
27.00

Scaloppine Saltimbocca veal medallions with prosciutto and fresh sage in a white wine sauce
26.00

Scaloppine Marsala veal medallions sautéed with sweet marsala, shallots & wild mushrooms
25.00

Contorni

Vegetable Side Dish

Verdura Capri Grilled baby vegetables with extra virgin olive oil and garlic. . . . . . . . . . . . .7.

Sautéed Spinach Sautéed in extra virgin olive oil and garlic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7.

Truffled Potatoes Oven-roasted with Italian herbs finished with white truffle oil. . . . . . . . . . . 9.

Broccoli Rabe Sautéed in extra virgin olive oil and garlic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9.

Grilled Asparagus In extra virgin olive oil. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10.

Fresh Fish of the Day . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . M/P

*18% Gratuity will be applied to parties of 6 or more


IL Tesoro NYC / ‘Whole Animal Tasting’ Sample Menus

‘Baby Goat- Tasting’

Goat pate Ravioli

Brown butter, fresh sage & chanterelle

White Kidney Truffle

Cannellini kidney beans, truffle, goat sausage

Braised baby goat with garlic butternut squash

Crispy sweet bread Frisee with fresh baby spinach & lemon champagne vinaigrette

4 course ‘Whole Animal-Carni’ (call for availability and price)

*All free-range or wild animals per availability: Goat, Wild Rabbit, Goose, Baby Lamb, Pheasant, Duck, Rooster, Baby Suckling Pig, Bovine, Venison

‘Whole Fish-Tasting ’

Blue Point Oysters ‘Agro-Dolce-Fritto’

Sea Scallops ‘Antica’ seared in blood orange with grilled radicchio& Black ‘Squid-Ink’ risotto

Sea Urchin, Butter lettuce Frisee

Whole ‘fish-of the-day’ sautéed in white wine, fresh lemon & butter

4 course ‘Whole Fish’ (call for availability and price)

*Whole fresh Fish per availability: Lobster, Branzino, Dover Sole, Stripped Bass, Swordfish, Sea Bass, Scallops, Sea Urchin


Whole Animal Tasting
Suckling Pig
First Course
Suckling Pig Confit Crostini
Crispy pork belly topped with melted Scamorza cheese
Second Course
Wild Mushroom Ravioli
Suckling pork tenderloin and chanterelle mushrooms in
a white truffle cream sauce
Third Course
Roasted Suckling Pig
Over risotto finished with a blood orange Cognac sauce


il tosororeserve wine list

ANTIPASTO FREDDO 

Cold Appetizer

Carpaccio Toscana Thinly sliced filet mignon dressed with olive oil, aged-balsamic, lemon, and capers served on a bed of wild arugula topped with shaved Parmigiano. . .14.
Carpaccio di Salmone e Tonno Fresh thinly sliced salmon and seared tuna topped with endives dressed with a olive oil, lemon, and champagne vinaigrette sauce. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.
.
Caprese Fresh Heirloom tomatoes, Buffalo Mozzarella, roasted red peppers, and baby greens with basil oil . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15.
Bruschetta della Casa Choice of heirloom tomatoes & basil, quattro formaggi, or mixed vegetables on top of crostini  served on a bed of mix baby greens . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .13.
Pere e Prosciutto  Red wine roasted pears with thinly sliced cured prosciutto finished with shaved Grana Padano. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14.
Antipasto del Giorno Grilled marinated vegetables, mixed cheeses, artichokes and cured meats . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.

ANTIPASTO CALDO

Hot Appetizer

Scallops Antica Seared scallops finished in a blood orange balsamic reduction over
grilled oranges, radicchio & endives . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16.
Vongole Cozze Saffron Clams & mussels sautéed with white wine, lemon, onion, saffron, finished with a  touch of cream. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.
Lobster or Shrimp Agrodolce Sicilian rosemary sweet & sour lobster tail, fresh tomato salad. . . . . . . . . . 17.
Polpetta Siciliana Sicilian-style meatballs sautéed in a spicy eggplant tomato sauce. . . . . . . . 14.
Braised Oxtail Served with creamy polenta finished with white truffle oil. . . . . . . . . . . . . .16.
Soft Shell Crab al Limone Crispy soft shell crab finished with white wine, lemon, and capers. . . . . . . 16.
Calamari Fritti Fried calamari served with a spicy garlic parsley aioli . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14.
Calamari alla Griglia Grilled and marinated in a spicy vinaigrette served over baby greens. . . . . 13.
Sausage & Broccoli Rabe Sautéed with garlic, extra virgin olive oil, & a touch of red pepper . . . . . . 14.
Carciofi alla Griglia Grilled Roman artichoke hearts sautéed with butter, lemon, & pancetta…..13.

INSALATE

Salad

Caesar Fresh grilled bread, baby Romaine Heart and shaved Parmigiano. . . . . . . 11.
Mista Baby greens, roasted peppers, fresh tomatoes, and black olives topped
with Gorgonzola. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10.
Spinaci Fresh baby spinach, sautéed mushrooms, pancetta, & radicchio finished with a olive oil & balsamic reduction. . . . . . . . . . . . . .  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12.
Rughetta Wild arugula and slices of tomatoes in a light aged balsamic dressing finished with shaved Parmigiano. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.
Bianco Endives, fresh mushrooms, lemon, & olive oil finished with shaved Parmigiano & pine nuts in a walnut, champagne vinegar dressing. . . . . . . 11.

RISOTTO

Risotto con Porcini                          Risotto Milanese                     Risotto alla Pescatora
   Porcini mushrooms with truffle oil. . . 24.               Saffron. . . .19.                   Lobster and mix seafood . . .29.

***Before placing an order, please inform your server if a person in your party has a food allergy***

PRIMI PIATTI

Our Pasta

Spaghetti Frutti di Mare Fresh mix seafood sautéed with garlic, olive oil, white wine, & tomato. . . . 25.  
Pappardelle con Porcini Porcini mushrooms, garlic, olive oil, and finished with white truffle oil. . . .23.
Linguine alle Vongole Fresh clams with white wine, garlic, olive oil, & crushed red pepper. . . . . . 22.
Pasta Due Fresh gnocchi quattro formaggi tartufo & spinach ravioli in tomato basil…20.
Bucatini all’ Amatriciana New classic sauce of crispy guanciale, shallots, tomato sauce, & Romano…18.
Penne Arrabiata or Vodka Spicy Roman tomato sauce or a vodka cream sauce. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16.
Farfalle Primavera Tomato cream sauce with fresh seasonal vegetables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18.
Rigatoni Bolognese or Norma Classic meat sauce or roasted eggplant, fresh tomato, basil, & ricotta. . . . .17.
Fettucine Mare e Monti Italian sausage, scallops & peas in a Porcini white truffle cream sauce . . . . 24.
Linguine Puttenesca Black olives, capers, anchovies, & oregano in a spicy tomato sauce . . . .  . .17.
Paglia Fieno Trevisana White & green capellini in a truffle cream sauce with mushrooms, peas, prosciutto, & radicchio oven baked topped with Parmigiano. . . . . . . . . . . .19.
Spaghetti Scampi Shrimp sautéed with garlic and olive oil in a Pinot Grigio wine sauce. . . . .21.
Lasagna Piemontese Wild mushroom meat sauce & fresh Mozzarella. .  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .24.
Pappardelle con Vitello Slow braised veal tenderloin, white wine, garlic, & cherry tomato. . . . . . . .24.  
Mezze Penne Pomodoro Fresh cherry tomatoes & basil, olive oil, & garlic. . . . . . . . . . . . .  . . . . . . . .15.

ENTRÉES

Duck Braciole Stuffed roasted duck breast with spinach and Scamorza cheese served in a Barolo wine, wild mushroom sauce served over risotto confit. . . . . . . . . . . 29.
Braised Short Ribs Served with fresh gnocchi in a lightly caramelized leek sauce . . . . . . . . . . .32.
Steak Toscana 18 oz dry-aged NY Strip steak marinated in Italian spices and aged-balsamic with roasted potatoes topped with truffle butter. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37.
Filetto al Pepe Verde Filet mignon in Cognac & green peppercorn sauce with white truffle oil. . 32.
Lamb Osso Buco Braised lamb shank in a spicy eggplant sauce over risotto Milanese.. . . . . .35.
Spiedini di Carne Mix grilled marinated meats of the day over grilled radicchio & asparagus served with a side of cognac sauce . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .34.
Pollo Contadina Sautéed chicken breast with seasonal vegetables & roasted red peppers, finished in a Tuscan mushroom sauce topped with fresh Mozzarella. . . . . .25.
Pollo Milanese or Paillard Breaded pan-sautéed chicken breast with fresh mix of baby greens, red onions slices, and Heirloom tomatoes in an aged balsamic dressing. . . . . . 23.
Scaloppine Teatro Veal medallions sautéed with olives & capers in a light tomato sauce. . . . . 25.
Scaloppine Favola Veal medallions sautéed with a white truffle cream sauce. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27.
Scaloppine Saltimbocca Veal medallions with prosciutto and fresh sage in a white wine sauce . . . . .26.
Grigliata di Pesce Mix grilled fresh fish & seafood over arugula & tomatoes served with a side
of Dijonese sauce. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .32.

CONTORNI

Vegetable Side Dish

Verdura Capri Grilled baby vegetables with extra virgin olive oil and garlic. . . . . . . . . . . . .7.
Sautéed Spinach Sautéed in extra virgin olive oil and garlic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7.
Truffled Potatoes Oven-roasted with Italian herbs finished with white truffle oil. . . . .  . . . . . . 9.
Broccoli Rabe Sautéed in extra virgin olive oil and garlic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9.
Grilled Asparagus In extra virgin olive oil. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10.

Fresh Fish of the Day . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . M/P

*18% Gratuity will be applied to parties of 6 or more

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