Food

Meet Scampi: A Coastal Italian Gem From an Ai Fiori Vet

Your New Post-Work Go-To for Cocktails and Crudo

By Ilana Dadras ·
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Photo: Oleg March

As far as beautiful after-work spots to also get a solid shrimp scampi, refreshing gin drinks and interesting crudo in good company under some flattering warm globe lights go (*gasps for air, questions whether noting the lighting was necessary, moves on*), this one is up there with the best of them.

From the chef behind the Spaniard and Ai Fiori, here comes Scampi: a southern and coastal Italian restaurant in a modern and classically beautiful space, now open in Flatiron. 

Come by with some friends or coworkers after work. For argument's sake, let's say you're the first to arrive. Head straight to the long, cream-colored, wood-lined bar, claim a brass stool and try to capture the attention of the head bartender—she's the one you may recognize from ABC Cocina or Pouring Ribbons. The Allora is a good place to start (gin, cucumber, lime, Thai chili aromatic salt), so why not start there.

When your comrades arrive, head back to the dining space, claim space on a navy leather banquette and let the feasting begin. Menu cheat sheet:

—Scampi will change monthly: right now it's an eponymous Mafaldini shrimp scampi with parsley, butter and lemon—with burrata scampi and langoustine scampi coming soon.
—The pasta will be house-made, so if braised pork ragu ravioli or lumache with manila clams and tarragon pesto sound up your alley, trust they'll be done right.
—Their crudo game here is very strong, with options like Razor and Manila clams with fennel, chives and prosciutto; and fluke with filone, castelvetrano, olives and celery. 
—Lastly, we'd like to give a special shout out to the lemon Italian ice dessert, with meringue and basil. For the love of everything holy, order it.

And now, it's photo time. Your favorite time.

Ilana Dadras passes her days writing about good food, talking about good food and consuming good food. Occasionally doing other things, too.

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