NYC Restaurants

Convivium Osteria
68 Fifth Ave (at St Mark's)
Brooklyn, NY, 11217
(718) 857-1833
http://www.convivium-osteria.com/

Cuisine: Portuguese , Spanish

Menu Details: Sopa De Feijão Branco Com Camarão, Selezione Di Olive, Carciofo Alla Romana Con Mentuccia, Chuleton De Buey A La Parilla Con Patatas Al Horno, Filete De Pagel Con Alcaparras, Tomate, Olivas Y Espinaca  

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Cititour Review:
It's often difficult to try newer places, especially when you have a four-year-old in tow. You tend to eat out earlier and avoid the hot spots. But being a foodie got the best of me and I decided to give Convivium Osteria a try. I had heard good things and wanted to see if they were true.

It wasn't quite 7pm when we arrived at Convivium's door.
It was a Saturday and the crowds had yet to arrive. I stuck my head in the door and asked if three were any tables. Luckily there was one available without a reservation. We found ourselves being led through a beautiful little space on Fifth Avenue in Park Slope, Brooklyn.

The restaurant was dimly lit with candles throughout. Our host brought us to a door in the back, and we proceeded to go into the basement. By now, I was thinking they're really sticking us in an out-of-the way spot. We walked down a creaky staircase and into what turned out to be a lovely room with brick columns and walls. It had the look and feel of a wine cellar. And then I realized, it was a wine cellar. The restaurant offers more than 200 varieties, and the list is constantly changing.

My son was intrigued, which helped to keep him occupied. I was glad the table next to us wasn't, so we could relax. Our waiter couldn't have been nicer.

Now, it was time to tackle the menu.
The food at Convivium is a mix of Portuguese, Spanish and Italian. We began with the house special appetizer. It was a piping hot pot of baby clams and chorizo smothered in a spicy sauce of tomatoes, onions and herbs. Amazing! Another dish of ravioli filled with cheese and artichoke ($13) was rich and oh, so buttery, as was another pasta dish made with duck ($14). We also shared a plate of seafood tapas ($26). It consisted of some of the freshest sardines I've tasted atop a bed of pimentos and onions. There was also grilled octopus, empanadas with a creamy seafood filling and peppers stuffed with fresh crab. Our son enjoyed a plate of pasta. A nearby table raved about the lamb chops and braised artichokes.

Conviviun had convinced us - we had found a spot worth finding. But, the next time we'll probably leave Thomas with a babysitter so we could enjoy more of the wine!
Review By: Sam Sayegh

Neighborhood: Park Slope

Entree Price: $15-20

Payment: Amex


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