Fiore Caffé, a sweet, corner Italian cafe that we’d never tried — very local, family-owned, apparently very much beloved by the neighborhood. How had I missed this place until the lockdown? I ordered our food online and picked it up. There was no one else inside, so I stepped in to get out of the cold. A lovely space, where I can see myself spending leisurely dinners or brunch When This Is All Over. But for now, takeout is good.
BF ordered the paccheri al ragu Napoletano, a slow-cooked pork/beef ragu served with wide, tubular noodles, and I got the housemade tortelloni stuffed with prosciutto and ricotta, in a creamy saffron sauce with zucchini and pancetta. Mine was dreamy, and nowhere near as rich as it sounded — just the right amount of oomph. BF couldn’t keep his fork out of my plate.
His ragu was a little acidic for me, though the pork was very tender. A homey dish, as well, on a blustery night. We split a salad of fresh mozzarella on tomatoes over arugula (a bit under-dressed), and lemony Brussels sprouts with pancetta. Pillowy bread to go with.
Fiore Caffé offers four other salads, a variety of antipasti (the prosciutto-wrapped pears especially tugged at my heartstrings. Next time.), more pasta, a risotto, and steak, salmon, and fish dishes for secondi. Plus desserts!
The night I was there, the owner was saying he’d just put up his new heat lamps for outdoor dining, and the wind had already knocked one over, crashing into the window! Alas, for now we’ll be without outdoor dining, but perhaps it’s for the best. In the meantime, let’s all do our damnedest to support our local eateries by getting takeout if you can. Hunkering down with well-prepared food is one of the few comforts we can enjoy right now.
3599 24th St.