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11 Favorite Italian Restaurants in NYC

August 8, 2017 - by Chelsey Grasso
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You can’t visit New York City and not spend at least one of your meals in an authentic Italian restaurant. While the options can sometimes be overwhelming, the 11 Italian restaurants rounded up below will never let you down. From La Masseria to Villa Mosconi, enjoy some homemade pasta and vintage restaurant aesthetics at any one of these beloved establishments.

Best of NYC Italian Restaurants: La Masseria (Midtown West)

La Masseria brings the Italian countryside to Manhattan, the name itself referring to the key structure on the farms in the Puglia region of Italy. Stone-covered walls, wooden ceiling beams, and white-linen tablecloths create a welcoming aesthetic at La Masseria, while the menu is just as loveable. Homemade potato gnocchi is used in the gnocchi al taleggio e radicchio, and  the ravioli di Angelina combines home made fresh caciotta cheese ravioli with a light tomato sauce, perfectly balancing out the flavors. 235 W. 48th St., 212-582-2111, lamasserianyc.com

Best of NYC Italian Restaurants: Allora Ristorante (Midtown East)

allora ristorante nyc

Allora Ristorante serves up classic Italian-American cuisine, and much of its menu is prepared tableside for an extra special experience. Order the bistecca di Manzo a la Diane (pan-fried steak), insalata alla Cesare, cotoletta d’Agnello (lamb chops), branzino, or one of the flambéed desserts to watch your meal created before your eyes. As for the ambiance, this place is all class, with a marble bar countertop, large floor-to-ceiling windows, and modern chandeliers hanging from above. 145 E. 47th St., 212-754-9800, alloranyc.com

Best of NYC Italian Restaurants: Grotta Azzurra (Little Italy)

Originally founded in 1908, Grotta Azzura is perhaps best known as being one of Frank Sinatra’s favorite Italian restaurants. Recently renovated, Grotta Azzurra presents patrons with an old-school charm that’s longingly reminiscent of Little Italy’s earliest days. Delmonico steak, salmon picata, spaghetti Bolognese, manicotta, veal Sorrentina, chicken Marsala, and eggplant parmigiana are some of the many traditional favorites you’ll find on the menu. 177 Mulberry St., 212-925-8775, bluegrotta.com

Best of NYC Italian Restaurants: Caffe Palermo (Little Italy)

caffe palermo

Home of the world’s best cannoli, as vouched for by New York City locals, Caffe Palermo is a city staple, bringing in tourists and residents alike. Even if you’re not a cannoli fan, there are plenty of other Italian baked goodies here for your choosing, including classic Italian ricotta cheesecake, chocolate mousse cake, homemade tiramisu, and classic New York cheesecake. And of course, don’t leave without taking a photo with the giant cannoli. 148 Mulberry St., 212-431-4205, caffepalermo.com

Best of NYC Italian Restaurants: Monte’s Trattoria (Greenwich Village)

Located in the heart of Greenwich Village, Monte's is a New York City staple beloved by  locals and visitors alike. Headed by Chef Pietro Mosconi, dishes are inspired by his home region of Emilia Romagna. Cannelloni (spinach pasta sheet stuffed with veal, spinach, and cheese), gnocchi con burro e salvia (potato gnocchi with butter and fresh sage), frutta di mare over linguini (clams, mussels, calamari, scallops, salmon, shrimp, and garlic in a red or white sauce), and a range of other delicious Italian dishes are made fresh daily. 97 MacDougal St., 212-228-9194, montestrattorianyc.com

Best of NYC Italian Restaurants: Nino’s 46 (Midtown West)

nino's 46 nyc

Originally opened in 1982, Nino’s 46 starts with traditional Italian recipes and adds a contemporary twist to them, making for a unique tasting experience. The Charred Octopus is a must for appetizers, served with green mango, black chili, and zucchini puree. When it comes to entrees, the Fettuccine Drunk Lobster Sauce (Maine lobster & shrimp, drunken lobster alfredo) and Coffee Crusted Skirt Steak (balsamic glazed cippolini, black garlic creamed kale) will not let you down. 39 W. 46th St., 212-719-4015, ninos46.com

Best of NYC Italian Restaurants: Patsy’s Italian Restaurant (Midtown West)

Patsy’s is one of New York City’s most special Italian restaurants, owned and operated by the Scognamillo family since 1944(!). That the food is mouth-wateringly delicious and authentic doesn’t hurt either. Signature dishes include stuffed calamari (with shrimp, crab, and lobster in a tomato and garlic sauce), veal rollatini Marsala (stuffed with mozzarella, parmigiana-reggiano, and prosciutto in a Marsala and mushroom sauce), and chicken contadina (Amish chicken cut into small pieces and fried with garlic, mushrooms, red peppers, and potatoes). 236 W. 56th St., 212-247-3491, patsys.com

Best of NYC Italian Restaurants: Obica Mozzarella Bar (Flatiron) 

antipasti obica nyc

Taking its inspiration from traditional sushi bars, Obica is a casual Italian restaurant that has its very own mozzarella bar. Handmade products are prepared in view, and the food is worth writing home about. Obica serves two varieties of Mozzarella di Bufala Campana DOP, as well as stracciatella di burrata. The menu includes contemporary takes on the likes of lasagna tradizionale, a selezione di salumi, and parmigiana di Melanzane in addition to its famed Mozzarella Bar. Additional location in Midtown East. 928 Broadway, 212-777-2754, obica.com

Best of NYC Italian Restaurants: Villa Mosconi (Greenwich Village)

Villa Mosconi has been keeping its customers happy for over forty years, providing memorable dining experiences for everyone who walks through its doors. Pastas are made fresh daily using a pasta machine directly imported from Italy, and you can taste the quality in their ziti, rigatoni, penne, spaghetti, and cappellini. Also worth ordering are their scaloppini dishes, flavorful sea scallops, and branzino, amongst the other noteworthy dishes that make up the menu. 69 MacDougal St., 212-673-0390, villamosconi.com

Best of NYC Italian Restaurants: Masseria dei Vini (Midtown West) 

masseria dei vini nyc

Executive chef Pino Coladonato does not disappoint with his wide-ranging and flavor-infused spinoff of La Masseria. The tera mare del Tavoliere (grilled baby octopus and cuttlefish with broccoli rabe on a bed of fava bean puree) and capesante e carciofi grigliati (sea scallops and artichoke hearts) are our top picks for appetizers at Masseria dei Vini, while the coniglio alla Caprese (oven roasted rabbit with fresh herbs and wine sauce) and fegato di vitello spadellato all’aceto di mirtilli (calf liver sauté with onions and blueberry vinegar) are not to be missed on the entrée menu. 235 W. 48th St., 212-582-2111, lamasserianyc.com

Best of NYC Italian Restaurants: Zibetto Espresso Bar (Midtown West)

If you want an authentic Italian coffee shop experience (and who doesn’t?) Zibetto Espresso Bar is the place to go. In addition to incredible and authentic coffee (one look at the gleaming La Cimbali espresso machine behind the marble bar and you'll be assured they know what they're doing), you'll also find great breakfast and lunch fare, as in fresh salads and hand-pressed panini. As with the coffee here, ingredients are carefully chosen, reflecting the best providers in the world. Mozzarella, fontina, and soppressata are all imported from Italy. The prosciutto is mouth-meltingly tender, aged for 24 months. If you need a midtown pick-me-up, Zibetto is your place. 1221 Sixth Ave. (on 48th St.), 212-332-2648; 501 Fifth Ave. (42nd St.), 646-838-6364; 1385 Sixth Ave. (on 56th St.), 646-707-0505; zibettoespresso.com


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