We opened the doors of Il Bambino in December of 2006. After many years of traveling, making our way through the casual tapas bars of Northern Spain, and the more simple, yet sophisticated, cafés of Italy, we felt it was time to begin a new chapter in our lives and open our own café.
Blending an Italian-style paninoteca with a Spanish-style tapas menu, Il Bambino’s objective is to provide customers with top produce, exceptional, but reasonably priced food, and good wine.
Our philosophy is simple: to share our passion for the hand-made meats, cheeses, and artisinal bread we serve with as many people as possible. To ensure the most gratifying eating experience, we choose the finest ingredients for our cuisine. We use a couple of different varieties of prosciutto, such as smoked (speck) and un-smoked (Di Parma); our salumi range from mild to strong, and our cheeses are both fresh and aged—all offered with our own selection of flavorful homemade condiments. Our Italian ciabbatina bread is baked each day, exclusively for our panini and crostini.
The menu at Il Bambino represents food in its finest form, showcasing the best ingredients that can be found and marrying them together in a way that is simple, natural, and barely manipulated. The small but precise selection of unique wines and beer on offer serve to compliment our food.
After years of working in and managing a number of New York’s restaurants—Darren as a chef at Oceana and Lavagna, and Melanie as a manager for several restaurants in the former Smith & Wollensky Restaurant Group—we wanted to create an environment that would serve as a meeting point, where people gather to relax and indulge their love of food with a superior bite to eat while enjoying a casual atmosphere with attentive and professional service. Thus, Il Bambino was born.
–Darren and Melanie Lawless