A Sandwich a Day: Taleggio Crostini at Il Bambino in Astoria
In this great city of ours, one could eat a different sandwich every day of the year—so that's what we'll do. Here's A Sandwich a Day, our daily look at sandwiches around New York. Got a sandwich we should check out? Let us know. —The Mgmt.
Is an open-faced toast really a sandwich? At Astoria's Il Bambino, the point is moot—you get two crostini per order, so you're one flip away from a more traditional sandwich if you want. Or don't—either way, these thin squares of toast are bellwethers of the "paninoteca's" mission: concentrate big flavors into tight packages.
The Taleggio, sun-dried tomato, and chive oil ($5.50) crostini are a standout. Generous hunks of funky, buttery Murray's Taleggio sit on a bed of what may best be described as a thinned-out tomato conserva. The chunky purée is less raisin-like than typical sun-dried tomatoes, and plenty clean—like a ripe, thin spread of summer. Chive oil, little more than chives blitzed with oil, fibers and all, adds potent, grassy kick that compliments the cheese well. Consider this the brighter, quirkier, more garlic-breathed cousin to the Neapolitan standby of tomato, basil, and mozzarella.