For such outspoken sticklers for tradition, Italians have a little-known experimental streak. It’s on display at Mulino a Vino in Chelsea, whose opening chef Davide Scabin infused the menu with whimsies like cacio e pepe doughnuts. The restaurant’s owner, Paolo Meregalli, has expanded on the theme with a casual spinoff called Raviolo, where he translates classic Italian primi and secondi into a menu of dumplings (filled pastas) and buns (steamed-bread sandwiches), served dim-sum style with bamboo steamers and chopsticks. What prevents this notion from qualifying as fusion, says Meregalli, is the fact that every ingredient is Italian, down to the steamed buns, which are made in-house. They make a pillowy cushion for the only version of spaghetti alla carbonara you should eat with your hands.
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On the menu at Raviolo; $11: 57 Seventh Ave. S., nr. Bleecker St.; 917-675-6319.
*This article appears in the November 13, 2017, issue of New York Magazine.