Navy Yard

Il Porto



About

On an isolated Clinton Hill block dominated by warehouses, Il Porto is a bright spot. The left half of the sizable storefront houses a takeout operation that does a brisk lunch business, and the right side functions as a casual Italian restaurant. High tin ceilings, teal-and-copper painted brick walls, and a jaunty mural depicting beachgoers on a boardwalk enliven an otherwise generic interior. Brick oven pies are a focus: The Navy Yard, named after this industrial part of the neighborhood, is rich and spicy. Earthy pesto replaces tomato sauce as a base and slices of sopressata and additional shreds of fresh basil are layered on top of mozzarella. For starters, the octopus salad trumps the fried calamari; the bite-sized chunks are dressed in olive oil and vinegar and get a crunchy texture boost from chopped celery. Linguine del mare includes a generous helping of shellfish in a saline broth that shouldn’t be wasted--the hearty bread, baked in-house, can sop up the extra sauce. The weekend brunch menu is more eclectic; savory steak and eggs is available, as well as a dessert pizza made with Nutella, pine nuts and marshmallows. — Krista Garcia


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