Misi New York

Come to Brooklyn for the Pasta, Stay for the Grappa.

Last week The Grappa Guy was in the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn (with Mrs. Grappa Guy) and had a splendid dinner at Misi New York. The pastas rule at Misi, and the two that we had were fresh, al dente, and outstanding. Add to that the knowledgeable staff and velvet service at Misi, and you have a great experience. All to be expected at a Missy Robbins restaurant.

What was not expected was a robust selection of Grappas at the bar.

When you ask for Grappa at a restaurant it’s unusual to find even one or two. To find 13 is quite remarkable, and The Grappa Guy was grinning, ear-to-ear.

Misi’s Grappa selection includes expressions from Capovilla, Gualco, Montanaro, Nardini, and Poli, so The Grappa Guy had some tough decisions to make. For Mrs. Grappa Guy he ordered the Poli Torcolato, and for himself, he had Montanaro Barbaresco. Both were exquisite expressions of their respective grapes, and quite different.

Montanaro Grappa di Barbaresco (Distilleria Dr. M. Montanaro) is made from the Nebbiolo pomace that was used to make Barbaresco, a red wine made in Piedmont. It has a delicate, floral nose with a slightly dry palate. I would have it with something slightly salty, like a dessert which had a salted caramel component.

Poli Grappa Torcolato (Poli Grappa) is made from the pomace of Torcolato wine (Torcolato di Breganze). This is a dessert wine made from partially dried grapes (Vespaiola, Garganega, and Tocai), which have had botrytis (“noble rot”) that contributes to the rich, sweet flavor of the wine. Although sugars do not come through the distillation process, the Grappa makes a clear statement about its origins. The aroma is redolent with dried fruit and honey, followed by a palate that is rich, round, and deep, with a lingering finish that resolves to cinnamon and baking spice. This paired well with Misi’s gelato, but is so extraordinary I could drink it with almost anything. IMHO, this is what artisanal Grappa distilling is all about, truly an expression of the grape.

Needless to say, The Grappa Guy will be returning to Misi, not only for the highly acclaimed cuisine, but the well-curated Grappa selection, all too rare in restaurants.

Perhaps Misi is setting a new standard for Grappa offerings in better Italian restaurants, one can only hope.

Cin cin!


Misi can be difficult to spot from the street. Go to the corner of S. 4th street and Kent Ave., its just north of there, right across the street from Domino Park, which makes for a nice postprandial stroll by the East River.

Grappas on the list as of this writing (this can change at any time!): 
Capovilla Grappa di Fior d’Arancia
Capovilla Grappa di Ribolla di Gravner
Capovilla Grappa di Barolo 
Gualco Stravecchia Grappa
Montanaro Grappa di Arneis
Montanaro Grappa di Barbaresco
Nardini Tagliatella Liquore (not technically a Grappa)
Nardini Grappa Riserva
Nonino il Moscato di Nonino Grappa
Poli Sarpa di Poli
Poli Amorosa di Settembre (Vespaiolo)
Poli Jacopo Poli Arzente (not technically a Grappa, a Brandy)
Poli Amorosa di Settembre (Torcolato)

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