The Citiblog

A Taste of Sicily at Piccola Cucina Casa in Boerum Hill
May 8, 2024, 1:50.11 pm ET



The moment you walk in the door at chef Philip Guardione’s tribute to Sicily in Boerum Hill, you feel like you are with family. Raised in the shadow of Mount Etna, Guardione’s sicilian roots come alive at this boisterous spot where food and wine flourish.

At Piccola Cucina Casa (141 Nevins St, Bklyn), a series of tables with cushy banquettes, leads to a semi open kitchen, where the clatter of plates is heard as servers race to meet the demand of the bustling crowd (and this was a rainy Sunday.) The walls are lined with artwork and Italian publications and a bright red “I Love Italy” neon sign near the kitchen. Our hostess, with wide-rimmed white retro glasses and thick Italian accent, prodding us to clean our plates. That was the easy part. The hard part was deciding what to try.

There are so many interesting dishes to choose from, like Calamari alla Griglio, grilled baby squids with guacamole and crispy carasau bread, and Polpette Della Nonna, flattened meatballs with porcini mushrooms in truffle sauce. Crispy Fried Squash Blossom come stuffed with zucchini and smoked provola cheese, while Artichokes filled with avocado, arugula, and shaved Parmigiano cheese are served as a salad with a balsamic reduction. Fish and meat mingle in Vitello Tonnato, thinly-sliced roasted veal loin with house-made tuna sauce, veal jus, black truffles and capers.

There is now shortage of fresh pastas. Among them, Paccheri with seafood three ways - scampi langoustine, lobster and shrimp. Meat-filled Ossobuco Agnolotti are served in a rich veal sauce with pecorino fondue, thyme and lemon. House-made Green Tagliatelle arrives smothered in a wild boar ragu with black truffle, while Ricotta Gnocchi is offered with a branzino ragù, zucchini flower, toasted almond and lemon zest.

Mains include Milanese-style chicken cutlet with potatoes; Skirt Steak, mashed potato with black truffle, chimichurri sauce; and Grilled Sea Bass with olives, capers and lemon dressing sauce with side dish. Daily specials are also offered, like the simply prepared Grilled Swordfish we tasted.

For dessert, you won’t want to miss the Tiramisu prepared tableside in a coffee cup with espresso-dipped ladyfingers, lots of fluffy whipped cream and dusted with cocoa powder.

Piccola Cucina Casa is an Italian experience you won’t want to miss, even if it’s just sitting outside with an espresso and that lovely tiramisu!