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A Mediterranean Hearth With Local Appeal


Favorite dishes at O Lar included piquillo peppers with crab and goat cheese, salt-roasted beets and mint pappardelle with lamb shank ragout.

Credit... Gregg Vigliotti for The New York Times


By Alice Gabriel

  • Feb. 22, 2013

There are plenty of compelling reasons to eat at O Lar, a modest Mediterranean-influenced restaurant in a residential neighborhood of Piermont, in Rockland County, N.Y. (The name means “hearth” or “home” in Galician.)

There are no views of the mighty Hudson, or of the glittering necklace that is the Tappan Zee Bridge, and you’ll have to sit cheek-by-jowl with other diners, but the dishes that emerge from O Lar’s wood-fired oven — bountiful pizzas, beautifully charred baby chicken with a brood of root vegetables, a warm chocolate cake cooled down with black-pepper gelato — are hearty, wholesome and spirited.


VERY GOOD

THE SPACE A simple storefront specializing in inspired Italian, Spanish and Basque food. The minimal décor includes English football flags (Chelsea, Manchester United) and a tourist poster of flamenco dancers. We counted 25 seats, plus five stools at the cramped bar. Wheelchair accessible.

THE CROWD Locals in hand-knit sweaters. Waiters are friendly, hardworking and mostly on top of things; regulars appear to get preferential treatment.

THE BAR A pitcher of sangria is $23. The wine list — short, astute and affordable — favors Spain.

THE BILL Cash only. Tapas and “little starters” are $6 to $14. Salads, $10. Pastas and gnocchetti, $15 to $17. Pizzas, $11 to $15. Entrees, $18 to $30. Desserts, $6.

WHAT WE LIKED Spanish fries, piquillo peppers with crab and goat cheese, salt-roasted beets, mint pappardelle with lamb shank ragout, roasted baby chicken, short ribs, panna cotta, chocolate cake with black pepper gelato, caffè macchiato.

IF YOU GO Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, 4 to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 4 to 10:30 p.m. For reservations, call ahead after noon on the day you want to go. On-street parking. Takeout available.

RATINGS Excellent, Very Good, Good, Fair, Poor.


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