Dim lights washed over the charming interior of Ribalta, the Italian pizza restaurant on East 12th Street. With Skrillex dropping hard beats over the speaker, the dinner crowd started filing in. The founder of Ribalta, Rosario Procino, paced around the restaurant ensuring that everything was going well for the night. It was a special evening at Ribalta. In fact, it was the restaurant’s first night introducing a new member to its menu of palatable pizzas: the White Truffle Pizza.
The idea stemmed from Procino and Chef Pasquale Cozzolino. White truffles, known as the “diamonds of the kitchen” in the culinary world, are only present this time of the year and are valued for their exquisite taste. They are a type of fungus that grow under trees in forests, and are harvested underground.
Ribalta teamed up with one of New York City’s best truffle distributors — Urbani Truffles — to produce a tantalizing pizza made up of eggs, mozzarella and white truffle.
“Urbani Truffles are the leader of the market,” Ribalta’s founder, Rosario Procino said. “They have the best quality products and they can give you the best, directly. And if you want to do something like this, you want to do it in the best way possible.”
The thin-crust pizza was served on a broad white platter. It was the elevated version of Ribalta’s signature Neapolitan pie. The mozzarella and egg blended perfectly with the thin slices of truffle to produce a flavor that was rich and subtle at the same time. The cheese was plain — a typical trait of mozzarella — while the egg augmented the taste of the truffle. This creative combination of ingredients was carefully measured so that each element contributed to the ideal flavor. In celebration of truffle season, Ribalta launched a four-course dinner that night, featuring the Crostini, Insalata and Gelato, with the pizza as the star of the menu. Each of the four courses honored truffle in a unique way.
The crostini arrived as a block of thick, crispy bread topped with a generous mound of burrata and shaved white truffle. Crafted from Italian cheese and cream, the burrata proved to be a nice cross between salty and sour.
The White Truffle Pizza will be on the menu until January, as it is a seasonal product. Don’t miss out on it!