It is a rarity that I travel to the upper west side. However when I do find myself there, I’ve noticed that there are a bunch of unique restaurants that are worth checking out.
After some hardcore boxing at Reebok Sports Club (which by the way is an awesome gym), I decided to grab a light bite. I wanted to take advantage of the cool summer night and sit outside, and Gina La Fornarina looked like a perfect place to do so.
My wonderful friends allowed me to do the ordering because they did not feel like dealing with the dreaded gluten questions.
The menu was heavy in gluten (pizza/pasta/meatballs), however there were a handful of items available that seemed great and gluten-free.
They placed a piping hot bag of bread on our table when we sat. Not going to lie – it smelled incredible.
I stayed far away from it. What I did eat (& share) was:
Fresh Artichoke Salad w/ Avocado & Parmigiana (gluten-free): When I ordered this I envisioned something totally different. I was surprised when I saw the presentation. I would compare this to a artichoke guacamole of some sort. It was tasty & light – just what I was looking for.
Tuna & Salmon Tartare (gluten-free): The only alteration you have to do to make this dish gluten-free is to ask for the soy sauce on the side, which is what we did. I loved the layer of salmon then tuna and actually ate this with the artichoke/gauc salad since it wasn’t served with any avocado.
Red Snapper w/ Caramelized Onions, Tomato and French Green Beans (gluten-free): This was a special for the night. I could have went without the sauce – it seemed a bit heavy. But regardless, the dish was good.
Overall it was nice to try a new spot that I’ve never heard of. The UWS ain’t looking so bad anymore.
Gina La Fornarina
Pros: Good quality food. Easy to find gluten-free eats.
Cons: The outdoor seating was covered by scaffolding (I know they can’t help it but I loathe scaffolding).