Italienne (French for Italian– the meeting of two heavenly cuisines) is Chef Jared Sippel and co-owner James King’s celebration of the cuisines and wines of Northern Italy and Southern France, with a spotlight on Provence. This neighborhood restaurant is consistent in providing both delicious dishes and personable, informed service, rooted in Italian and French tradition.
With a strong focus on the nose-to-tail and root-to-stem ethos, diners have the option of enjoying a four-course tasting menu in the back dining room or, in the front of the restaurant– an osteria that is their taverna. Either way, you can’t go wrong. Here are the Top 5 Things to Order at Italienne. One restaurant, two spaces, seven menus, and five dishes you need to try!
1. Carne Cruda: Starting with the “Beginnings” on the Dining Room menu is the carne cruda, a raw beef highlight. In Italienne’s case, it’s served with almonds, coriander flowers, and pine bud syrup. Never had pine bud syrup? It’s foraged from the Dolomite Alps National Park in Trento, Italy, where the young buds of the Mugo Pine are macerated in water and sugar to create a sweet, golden brown syrup that has the scent of delicate maple, rosemary, and wild herbs.
2. Salade D’Autumne: It might be winter, but this autumn salad is still a winner. La ratte potatoes offer a nutty flavor and a buttery texture. Add some winter thistle, foie gras, and a truffle vinaigrette, and this salad hits a homerun. (Also on the Dining Room menu.)
3. Trofie Monte & Mare: Trofie is a short, thin, twisted pasta from Liguria in Northern Italy. Chef Sippel serves it with a shellfish of the season (like little neck clams or shrimp), pickled green garlic, and chanterelle mushrooms. This dish is from the “Grains from the Field” section of the Dining Room menu and it’s a must-order.
4. Gateau Basque: Now, on to the Taverna menu! This traditional dessert from the Basque region of France is constructed from layers of a cake with a pastry cream filling. The kicker? House-made quince preserve. (Yes, it’s ok to go just for dessert!)
5. Paris Brest: This classically French dessert is typically made of choux pastry and a praline flavored cream, but Italienne’s version is covered with chopped hazelnuts and served with a cocoa nib and hazelnut cream. It’s not Nutella, but it totally hits that same, amazing spot.