Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Cibo: Southern Italian Cuisine in Yorkville

Opened in October 2015 by Liberty Entertainment Group’s Nick Di Donato, Cibo is the sister restaurant to Yorkville's Ciao Wine Bar. With a sleek and modern interior and impressive floor to ceiling wine wall, the restaurant features butcher-block tables, plush leather chairs, and glass-enclosed wine room that holds more than 1,500 bottles. Executive chef Severio Macri’s handmade pastas are hung to dry on racks by the open kitchen where Cibo's pizza oven radiates a warm glow along the the impressive 40-foot long marble open kitchen counter crowned with a bank of light bulb marquee-style lettering announcing CIBO-CIBO-CIBO. The traditional Italian menu features an extensive list of of over 20 Antipasti, from Grilled Octopus, Pesce Crudo, and Arancini to Salumeria with Prosciutto di ParmaCapocollo, Salsiccia Calabrese and homemade Taralli, Insalate, Zuppe, Risotto, Pasta Fresca, Pizza and Calzone. There's also a 'Pranzo in Fretta' lunchtime menu for diners in a hurry and popular Lobster Tuesdays — $25 for a fresh, whole lobster prepared four ways. The fusilli with chicken and porcini mushrooms in a light cream sauce was sensational and the perfectly blistered pizzas that were presented to the table of ladies beside us looked and smelled wonderful. I will need to come back to explore more of chef Macri's excellent pastas or his wildly popular Pizza da Nicolino with tomato, fior di latte, arugula and prosciutto di parma — Mamma Mia!

Cibo's menu with traditional southern Italian dishes

Warm house-made rosemary and olive oil focaccia with black olives

Caesar Salad with bacon, croutons, shaved parmigiana-reggiano and fresh lemon

Organic Greens with cherry tomatoes, lemon and olive oil

Ricotta Ravioli with prosciutto, spinach and cherry tomatoes

Fusilli with chicken and porcini mushrooms in a light cream sauce

Pizza oven and open kitchen

Cibo Wine Bar Executive Chef Saver Macri

Orecchiette with Sausage and Rapini
Serves 2
Recipe by Chef Saverio Macri  

5 oz dried orecchiette pasta
1/2 bunch of rapini 
1 spicy Italian sausage with casing removed 
2 oz Fontina cheese
2 cloves garlic
Extra virgin olive oil to taste
Parmesan and Fontina cheese

Put the pasta in a pot of boiling water for 10-12 minutes and the rapini for 5-7 minutes, until fork tender. In the meantime, add some olive oil to a sauté pan and and brown the sausage. Then add the garlic and let them brown together. To serve, toss in the cooked orecchiette and rapini, and finish it with shaved parmesan and fontina cheese.

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