Seeking good moderate Italian, cigar bar
I'm getting married next Sunday, and on Friday night
I'm going out on the town with a bunch of buddies. I'm
trying to avoid the usual bachelor party thing.
Instead, I'm hoping to drag everyone out for some good
Italian food--in the $30-$40 a person range, with
wine--and then go somewhere to drink whiskey, smoke
stogies, and just shoot the breeze. I'm hoping to find
this somewhere below 23rd Street and above Canal. Any
Don't want to try to help you too much with the
Italian thing, but on Friday nights I usually end up
at dba on 1st avenue between 2nd and 3rd streets.
Their selection of single malts, beers and whiskies is
second to none and you can smoke cigars (bring your
own). It can get pretty crowded on a Friday night,
but there is an ebb and flow to the crowd, so keep
your eyes on tables for people departing. Last night
the place was rocking, yet my wife and I managed to
get seats at the bar, where I enjoyed a Sosa #2, which
was superb! Back on the Italian subject, I have not
been to Il Bagatto (192 E. 2nd St.) in a while, but I
do remember some really decent food at great prices.
Congratulations on your upcoming wedding!
Reporting back: on David Feldman's recommendation, my
group and I wound up at i Coppi, a Tuscan restaurant
between 1st Avenue and Avenue A. The food was
exquisite up and down the menu; at Vinnie the waiter's
suggestion, we started with a couple of gorgonzola
pizzas, then chose on our own a bruschetta with pate,
a tuna carpaccio, and a couple of other plates that
were wholly enjoyed but sadly forgotten (this was a
bachelor party, after all, and there was much
drinking). As for entrees, I had a wonderful veal
stew/fricassea; several guys had a shellfish dish that
also was out of this world. The only thing that looked
half-hearted was a pasta in cream sauce, ordered by
our party's lone vegetarian. Desserts were similarly
excellent--we ordered 5 or 6 things for our group of
ten and sent them around the table. We chose wines
pretty much at the bottom of the list--a $25 Tuscan
table red and a $28 Chianti, I believe--and they too
were very good.
The owner sent complimentary sparking wine to the
table when the meal was over, capping a night of grade
A service. I can't wait to take my wife to this place.
Afterwards we went to Burp Castle. No cigars, I know,
but not as crowded as dba or Swifts (two other
favorites in the neighborhood) and with just as good a
selection of beers, which is all we were up for after
all that wine.
In conclusion, I heartily recommend both i Coppi and
marriage, although not necessarily in that order.