The swish newish Gansevoort Park Hotel has opened its ground floor restaurant/lounge Asellina, so let's take a look around. The spacious Italian establishment has two leather-wrapped bars, multiple dining rooms, a big fireplace, copper ceilings, and an "earthy" concrete tile floor intended to lend the space a rustic feel. It's pretty spacious, and in the spring, Asellina will open a garden patio grown over with greenery and moss, under "a canopy of copper filament bulbs." We're told that contrary to previous reports, the name does not mean "little ass," but Google does confirm that there was a famous tavern in Pompeii called Asellina, and it may have been a brothel.
For better or worse, sex doesn't seem to be on the menu at this NYC Asellina. Executive Chef Marco Porceddu is a native of Sardinia who comes to New York by way of Las vegas, and his Asellina is all about seasonal Italian, with unique items such as Bitter Cocoa Pappardelle with Wild Boar Ragu; Chestnut Flour Tagliatelle with sausage ragu and wild fennel; and Suckling Pig Pizze with robiola and caramelized red vinegar scalogno. Of course the emphasis here (like everywhere) is on the freshest farm-to-table ingredients, like imported riccotta, fresh baked flatbreads, and meticulously-prepared cocktails.
Asellina // 420 Park Avenue South // (212) 255-9717