Best Italian Food: A perfect neighborhood trattoria

Dopo

Before last fall’s expansion into the nail salon next door, the daily swarm at tiny Dopo made it a rare treat. If you didn’t want to face an endless and chilly sidewalk wait, you’d have to show up early enough to beat the most aggressive senior-citizen early birds. Now that Dopo is no longer minuscule, it’s ripened into the perfect neighborhood trattoria: the intimacy of a storefront, with enough seats to give you a fighting chance of snagging one. The menu has ripened, too. Chef and owner Jon Smulewitz still fashions his own tasty salumi and pates in-house, but he’s added a cheese platter and a selection of pesci crudi, raw seafood plates. The rest of his compact menu has never tasted better. A recent thin-crust pizza was a steamy distillation of spring, with sweet, earthy asparagus stalks and fine slices of spring onion. And an ever-so-slightly-warm arancino — a deep-fried, tangerine-size ball of risotto — revealed a filling of pork ragu that oozed orange oil. A delightful thing to drop in for.

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