I have been singing the praises of my neighborhood for a while, saying that it was “up and coming.” Thankfully, that turned out to be true. The area between what is classically known as Chelsea and the northern area that is Hell’s Kitchen (affectionately named “Hellsea” by some) has not exactly been a great supply of food. Penn Station and Port Authority don’t scream “Eat Here!” But in the last 2 years (and mostly in the last 6 months), 9th Avenue between 34th and 42nd Streets may actually be going somewhere.
One welcome addition is Sergimmo Salumeria. There is currently one in Queens, but they also just opened one on 9th Avenue between 35th and 36th Streets. It’s a small place, but they did an amazing job decorating it and making it very welcoming.
I had heard that this place was already generating lines out the door, and seeing as though I had never heard of it , it was time to try.
They have some very classic Italian packaged goods, and I had to try the Espresso Coffee Soda. It was not what I was expecting, and had some redeeming qualities, but I don’t know if I will go out of my way to drink this again.
I decided to try Il VIP which included prosciutto di parma, fresh mozzarella, arugula, E.V. Olive oil, and fig spread. It is VERY expensive at $14… until you get it. Half this sandwich left me so full I could hardly walk back to the office. (And the second half made an AMAZING addition to an omelet the next day.)
The bread had the outside crunch and inside give and fluffiness that you dream about in bread. The prosciutto and mozzarella were unbelievably fresh and I loved the fig jam (though I wish there were a bit more of it… but I am a fig jam fan so I may be in the minority on that preference). The arugula was also a great bitter crunch for it. A fantastic sandwich overall.
We also tried 2 different kinds of risotto balls, one meat and one vegetable, as well as a sampling of olives.
The balls were lightly fried, creamy on the inside, and had good flavor. I actually would have preferred them with a bit of sauce, but they were still good.
The one problem with having a line out the door is that it’s hard to keep the AC pumping enough to keep diners… and sandwiches… cool. By the time I finished my first half, my second half was starting to pool onto the serving board.
We went back a second time and got an assortment of other goodies.
I tried the Bresalola e Arugula saald with arugula, bresaola, and shaved parmigiano drizzled with lemon dressing and E.V. olive oil. It was absolutely delicious and fresh.
Someone ordered the chicken salad with grilled chicken, arugula, sliced avocado, cherry tomatoes, and corn with lemon dressing and E.V. olive Oil.
The special that day was pork shoulder with balsamic, arugula, and cheese.
Someone else ordered the Di Fracesca Panini, which was a fried cutlet, fresh mozzarella, roasted peppers, and artichokes.
Overall, everything we have had here has been very tasty. It’s a wee bit on the expensive side, but they have big portions and fresh food. It is a novel menu for this neighborhood and I’m glad to have this in the neighborhood.
Total Nom Points: 7 out of 10