Previously known as a demure team player, cozying up to tomatoes or blanketing pizza margherita, mozzarella is making a brazen move into the bright white spotlight. First came Rome’s Obika, a restaurant entirely devoted to the mild, milky stuff. Then Mario Batali announced plans for a Los Angeles mozzarella bar. Now local restaurants have started milking the trend with everything from tasting plates to tableside preparations.
English Is Italian
Like Rosa Mexicano’s guacamole, the housemade mozzarella is prepared tableside on a rolling trolley, and briefly cooked in a skillet with olive oil, cremini mushrooms, and tomatoes; $15 supplemental charge to the $39 family-style prix fixe dinner.
622 Third Ave., at 40th St. 212-404-1700
Rock Center Cafe
Every Monday evening through March, chef Antonio Prontelli showcases his housemade mozzarella in six dishes (from mozzarella in carozza to fried mozzarella ravioli; $8 to $12) available with optional wine pairings and served at the bar.
20 W. 50th St., nr. Fifth Ave.; 212-332-7620
Nearly everything the fresh-Italian-cheese freak could ask for: housemade fior di latte (that’s cow’s-milk mozzarella to you), two types of mozzarella di bufala, and burrata, all served on one sampler plate, $28 for the table.
154 W. 45th St., nr. Seventh Ave.; 212-869-4545