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Aug 3, 1999 07:47 PM

Rao's...what's the deal?

  • j

This summer I have been working in East Harlem, right
around the corner from Rao's. What is the fascination
with this place? Why is it so difficult to get a
reservation? Is it just because they have 11 or is it
8 tables? It is in a very obscure place. I was
surprised to stumble across it. Curiosity is killing
the cat. Thanks. Jo

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  1. Rao's is, quite possibly, the best southern Italian
    restaurant in NYC. However, getting a table is next to
    impossible. Rather than take reservations as a usual
    restaurant does, they rent tables. People have tables,
    say, every 2nd Tuesday, or whatever. To get in, you
    have to know someone who has a table, and get them to
    give it to you for a night.

    If you manage it, the food is awesome. I've eaten
    there twice (my dad knows someone who knows
    someone...). Everything is good. The marinated
    peppers are the best I've eaten anywhere, as is the
    seafood salad. The times I've been there, we've just
    said "We like everything" and let them bring what they