Do you have dreams of dining on a Greek island—then all of a sudden realize you’re stuck in the concrete jungle this summer? Well, White Olive can get you there. White Olive is a Mediterranean restaurant situated in Midtown Manhattan offering a wide variety of Mediterranean cuisines that can whisk you away from New York.
Entering White Olive starts the journey—you’ll feel as if you are entering an enchanting Greek oasis as you encounter polished sandstone walls, white oak floors, and cream-cushioned leather chairs and booths sitting on an elegant gold frame. A pristine bar is stationed on the left and a private dining room is at the back of the space, where patrons could host birthdays, bridal showers, office parties, and other events. The decor behind White Olive is brought to you by President and CEO Lesly Zamor of Seed Design Planning (SEED DBC) Inc., who has worked on popular locales such as Donatella Restaurant, TAJ Lounge, Avenue Nightclub, Slate, Penthouse at the Dream Hotel, and Lavo NightClub and Restaurant in Las Vegas.
As for the mouthwatering menu, it was curated by co-owner brothers Michael Karim Sopariwalla of ZZ Pizza Bar and Grill and Amin Himani of River Dock Restaurant and Bar, Seattle Coffee Roasters, Pacific Grill, Seaport Café, Wine & Chill and Nanking. The idea for the restaurant came about while Sopariwalla and Himani were traveling through Turkey and Greece. The duo fell in love with the culture and the dishes they discovered, specifically the meal they consumed at The Ritz-Carlton in Turkey.
I kept all this in mind when I visited White Olive for dinner recently. We started off with three appetizers. Our first was char-grilled Mediterranean octopus, on a bed of red onions and tomatoes drizzled with extra virgin olive oil and red wine vinegar. We also had the Keftedes, which are Greek meatballs served in tomato sauce and the unique Eggplant Tower, which consisted of stacked eggplant stuffed with melted mozzarella cheese and tomatoes with pesto sauce.
For my entree, I chose the Trenete Truffle Pasta, a decadent dish containing fresh-cut trenette pasta tossed in parmesan cheese, Portobello mushrooms, truffle oil, roasted garlic, and a white creamy sauce. This dish was comforting and definitely hit the spot, as the mushrooms and cream sauce enhanced the truffle flavor.
Of course, you can’t forget the tasty cocktails offered at White Olive. Since I have a soft spot for passion fruit, I had the Be Passionate cocktail which was crafted with Smoke Lab Vodka, Chinola Passion Fruit Liqueur, Barrow’s Intense Ginger Liqueur, Fresh Lemon Juice, and Ginger Bitters. The cocktail is garnished with dried lemon and cracked black peppercorn. The Be Passionate had an intense sweet-tart flavor from the passion fruit and a spicy finish from the cracked black peppercorn.
For my second cocktail of the evening, I had the Espress Yourself, which is White Olive’s version of an Espresso Martini. This espresso martini was special as it contained Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Espresso Vodka, Mr. Black Cold Brew Liqueur, Tempus Fugit Crème de Cacao, Fresh Espresso, and was garnished with a ground espresso swirl. To top it off, the bartender made it even more special for me as he made the martini creamier by incorporating Bailey’s since I really wanted a sweet ending to the night.
Those craving an authentic Greek experience should not miss this. If you’re seeking a post-shopping or pre or post-show dinner, as well as a spot to host your next event, then definitely pay White Olive a visit.
For more information on White Olive, follow the restaurant on Instagram @whiteolivenyc.
White Olive, 39 West 55th Street (betw Fifth/Sixth Avenues); The main dining room seats up to 100 people and the private dining room up to 20 people.