As Dana can attest, the guys behind Torrisi Italian Specialties know what’s up. Having not been there for lunch, when I heard they were moving this part of their daily offerings next door to a place called Parm, I knew I had to go. So within the first week they opened, on a Saturday, Emily and I made our way there. For the less patient, this probably would have been a mistake, and I am not sure if it has died down at all (doubtful), but we arrived slightly before 2pm and were told it would be an hour. We walked around the area for about 45 minutes, doing some preliminary Christmas shopping and then waited out the last bit inside the small, very crowded establishment.
We were seated at the end of the bar, as opposed to a table, but with a very friendly bartender and great view of the open kitchen, given the option I feel like I would have preferred it anyways. Emily was dying for a ball o’ mozz after we had it at Torrisi, and I was set on trying their Chicken Parm. When it came time to order, we were devestated (very briefly) to learn that they were out of mozz balls. The bartender assured us that the mozz sticks were well worth it so we ordered those, the afformentioned Chicken Parm hero, and garlic bread deluxe (with ricotta and marinara on the side).
The items came one at a time, with the mozz sticks first, eliminating any former sense of devastation. While you can pretty much never go wrong in ordering these anywhere, I was truly surprised to find how superior they tasted to the countless fried cheese logs I’ve had in the past. This is a testament to how amazing their fresh homemade mozzarella is.
I originally wanted the garlic bread to eat with the ball of mozarella we were no longer getting, but decided to order it anyways, and upgraded to the Deluxe. While delicious, I can’t decide if I liked it better solo or not. They do garlic bread perfectly and I almost feel like the add ons take away from that fact.
Lastly came the Chicken Parm hero. They offer 3 different sizes, the hero being the middle size, and it was perfect for sharing since we had apps as well. Again, a classic that you would think is pretty good almost anywhere, but hard to make outstanding, clearly shined here. I loved it. Side note: Any marathon running champs out there who can’t have sesame seeds, if you ever go, make sure you let them know because the hero was seeded but it doesn’t say that on the menu.
This meal left me completely satisfied, having consumed the perfect amount of food for a delicious late lunch. If you go, plan for a wait, although it is a fun area to walk around. Or go to the Spring Lounge for a drink as it is a block away. Or steal a garlic salt shaker from the pizza place across from the Spring Lounge, whatever (too many comments directed at very few readers but anyways).
Lastly, despite my satisfaction, sitting at the bar staring at the open kitchen, I watched them carve what looked to be some amazing turkey breast, and in looking at the menu again while writing this post, there are just so many great options that require more than one return visit.