Selling for upwards of $3,600 a pound, truffles are the most expensive food in the world—and the highly sought-after delicacies have spawned everything from illegal truffle-trafficking industries to illegitimate smuggling rings. Cloaked in mystique, the earthy treats have cemented their status as a culinary fascination among chefs eager to experiment with them and foodies eager to sample them. The recently opened Urbani Truffle Lab NYC—the first of its kind in the United States—is committed to bringing the delicacy to a wider audience. Opened by Urbani Truffles USA, which controls 70 percent of the global truffle trade industry, the lab serves as a test kitchen and tasting room.
Helmed by the vice president of marketing, Sabrina Notarnicola, and chef Christine Berni-Silverstein (a former finalist in Master Chef, season 5), the lab hosts weekly events including dinners, private events, and guest series, where top chefs demonstrate tried-and-true truffle techniques. Truffle lovers have the opportunity to learn how to prepare the truffles in hands-on cooking classes. The eclectic lab is outfitted with colorful wall hangings, plenty of tables, and a demonstration kitchen. While there, guests can buy truffles, sauces, dried mushrooms, and other ingredients. (urbani.com)