What To Order At Fifty Paces Wine Bar In The East Village | Tasting Table NYC

Marco Canora transforms the East Village Terroir into Fifty Paces

The Caccuicco (a tomato-based seafood stew brimming with head-on prawns, mussels, hake, calamari and clams) will run you $34 at Marco Canora's East Village Italian stalwart, Hearth.

At Fifty Paces, his new wine bar just down the block (hence the name), you can get a more casual bowl of juicy mussels and clams—steamed in the same slow-cooked tomato-and-calamari base as the stew—for just $14.

That's the beauty of the new spot, which replaced Terroir, Canora's longtime wine bar with former partner Paul Grieco: You'll get some of the same ingredients as the dishes he's known for at Hearth, without the cost or commitment. Plus, it's more laid-back and just a little bit cooler—sort of the Solange to Hearth's Beyoncé.

"This is more of a sibling to the restaurant; you can have a meal, but you don't have to sit in the dining room," Canora says. "We looked at the menu at Hearth as a mise-en-place list and reconceived some of the dishes."

Pork ragù that dresses pasta at Hearth is served here on sloppy "giuseppes" with whipped ricotta ($12). And the gingered beef bone broth from Hearth's takeaway window, Brodo, makes an appearance in a hearty braised beef-neck soup with nutty brown rice, scallions and shiitake mushrooms ($12). And you can get Hearth's house-made charcuterie here, too, including melt-in-your-mouth, paper-thin slices of salt-cured duck breast ($6). (Some beloved Terroir favorites make an appearance, too, like fried sage-wrapped lamb sausage, $9, pictured above.)

Records at 50 Paces | Gingered beef broth soup | Nuts, cheese and olives with cured duck breast | Wall mural | Clams and mussels

"I want the menu to feel approachable and affordable, especially for the longtime East Village residents and NYU students," Canora says. 

Of course, Fifty Paces is first and foremost a wine bar, with a similarly cozy feel to its former incarnation (after all, the space is only about 500 square feet). Canora opened up the area a bit by taking down shelving installations on both sides of the room, and added character in the form of two murals by staffer and artist Karen Spitzer, as well as a collection of 200-plus vinyl albums, most of which are from his father-in-law. Patrons can scribble music requests from the Beatles-, Fleetwood Mac- and Stones-heavy collection on a chalkboard near the front door.

As for the wine list, you'll find similarly esoteric Old World wines you would have seen on the tome-like Terroir list (a funky Lebanese red called Jeune, a crisp white Nero d'Avola), but on a much less overwhelming scale.

"I wanted the list to be friendlier," Canora says. "After a long day of work, you shouldn't have to have an elaborate conversation to order a glass of wine."

He adds, "Still, I'm never going to serve f**king Yellow Tail Chardonnay."