Due to city red tape—specifically a held up liquor license—Porsena is not yet open, even though the gas is on and the space is pretty much good to go in every way. But the East Village will welcome Sara Jenkins' latest endeavor, and her follow up to sister restaurant Porchetta, soon enough.
Until then, how about a look around?
The modest space is divided into two halves. The left half holds a long bar, a few tall bar tables, and one low window-side table for walkins. The right dining room is a long row of light wood tables and mix matched chairs set aside for reservations. Then there's the primo table right in front of the open kitchen. It is here where Jenkins and her right hand man Sebastian Jaramillo will serve ever-changing prix fixe menus catered to large groups. It will be sat once a night, it will be reservation only, and it will be the place Jenkins can show off her latest creations and items that are priced out of a menu where most everything is under $30.
Said main menu has yet to be finalized, but the chefs are experimenting. During a sneak preview this afternoon they offered a spectacular pasta with many cheeses, sure to be a staple, strozzapreti with fried cauliflower, olives, capers, chile, and breadcrumbs, buccatini with mustard greens and lamb sausage, and an off the menu special, a deep maroon red wine pasta. She'll serve a handful of pastas like these—changing seasonally—along with a smattering of appetizers like salads and steamed mussels and about four mains, including a roast chicken, a pork chop, and a fish cooked in parchment.
Oh, and that portrait show above? It's of Jenkins' Tuscan 'grandparents.' They own the farm next to her parents' place and taught Jenkins much of what she knows about Italian food.
· All Coverage of Porsena [~ENY~]