One of the greatest aspects of my current job is that I have coworkers! Delightful, wonderful coworkers. And AS, one such coworker, just left the bakery to return to his former consulting position... similar to my own situation a few years ago. Anyway, we met up for celebratory/goodbye/thank-you drinks after work on Friday, ducking out of the frigid cold into Stuzzicheria near the bakery in Tribeca.
Stuzzicheria is the downtown outpost of Bar Stuzzichini in the Flatiron district. Apparently, it was happy hour, so though it meant we couldn't sit at an actual table-- relegated instead to backless stools at the bar-- we did get some benefits out of the deal. First, drinks: AS got an enormous mug of Bitburger, and I had a quartino of Fiano D'Avellino. All the wine here comes in quartinos, which means it's a bit more expensive than a regular glass, but you get more. The classic trade-off.
So back to the happy hour part. Each diner at the bar gets one free stuzzichini-- a type of Italian bar snack or appetizer-- with the order of a drink. Both of us went for the Castelvetrano olives. This was a surprisingly generous dish of plump, green olives, and they turned out to be some of the best olives I've ever encountered. Not greasy, but plump, almost buttery, and supremely delicious, they were incredibly tasty and incredibly, well, free.
Though the service was nonexistent-- the bartender, for the most part, talked on his phone and ignored patrons, making it impossible to get his attention--Stuzzicheria was enough of a good deal that I'd go back for another round of happy hour food and drinks.
305 Church Street at Walker