From Our Editors
Chef Franco Migliorini sources local and sustainably farmed ingredients for Chicca's seasonal Roman dishes, showcasing their freshness with a philosophy of omitting "unnecessary ingredients." In the trattoria, Migliorini found a more casual outlet for the expertise he honed in Campagnola's posh, Upper East Side kitchens and Chelsea's celebrated Tuscan institution, da Umberto. Restaurateurs Antonia and Paolo Alavian's care in finding an experienced chef may be explained in the name Chicca, which is Italian for "special little things" and their daughter's nickname. Wood-fired pizza remains on the menu as a vestige of the Alavians' prior project, L'Ulivo, becoming the signature dish by virtue of its seniority over fresh, undeclared pastas and a carefully curated selection of fish, poultry, and meat. The Italian American Committee on Education commissioned the restaurant to teach adult cooking courses, each of which maps a region of Italy via a seasonal meal and an Italian language lesson.
An elegant design scheme rules the dining room, characterized by white woodwork that frames vertical swathes of patterned crimson wallpapers. The façade's accordion-style french doors fold back on fine days, flooding the interior with light and the scent of peppermint Altoids on the west wind's breath, and extending seating onto the sidewalk.