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Gonzo, Gusto, Cacio e Pepe, or A Voce??

melodyt1313 Aug 14, 2006 11:23 AM

Looking for good Italian Downtown and all of these look really good...What has the best outdoor seating, creative pastas, and good chocolate desserts??


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  1. f
    Fielding RE: melodyt1313 Aug 14, 2006 03:51 PM

    I like Lavagna.

    1. b
      bobby06877 RE: melodyt1313 Aug 14, 2006 04:17 PM

      I have not been to A Voce so I can't comment on that. Gusto is okay but it was a forgettable experience. I love Gonzo and Cacio e Pepe. I posted a review a long time ago about Cacio e Pepe and remember saying that one of their weaknesses was the dessert selection. It was underwhelming.It may have changed since then but when I went we skipped dessert and went to the bakery next door. Gonzo has okay dessert, nothing spectacular.Both have very small outdoor sitting areas. Some options that you may want to consider include Cristo (creative pasta with an outdoor garden area as well as creative pastas. Skip the chocolate and get the zeppoles with chocolate sauce), Bianca (no outdoor area but great pasta and dessert) and Otto, which has amazing desserts. I eat at a lot of Italian restaurants and I honestly can not think of one that has great chocolate desserts.

      1 Reply
      1. re: bobby06877
        Lucia RE: bobby06877 Aug 14, 2006 10:43 PM

        I was just at Cacio e Pepe this past Friday, and dessert selection hasn't improved. The food was great, though. I haven't been to Gusto or Gonzo. Been to A Voce once soon after it opened and had a mixed experience that hasn't made me want to return.

      2. j
        jonasblank RE: melodyt1313 Aug 15, 2006 03:18 PM

        These places vary pretty widely in price and atmosphere, so that is kind of a difficult list to pare down. People on this board love Cacio e Pepe so much I was almost skeptical that it would meet expectations, but it absolutely did-- and the signature dish is truly stunning. A few misses here and there, but the friendly service and great wine list make it a can't-miss.

        A Voce is a more formal restaurant, with (in my opinion) kind of off-putting hotel-ish ambiance and uneven service, but the food is a superb example of upper-end Italian.

        I have not been to Gonzo or Gusto...

        1. w
          wurstle RE: melodyt1313 Aug 15, 2006 09:37 PM

          in case you didn't know, Eater at http://eater.curbed.com/ is reporting that Jody Williams, the chef at Gusto, left Gusto last week. Amanda Freitag (from Sette & 'Cesca) will be taking over in mid-Sept. So you may want to skip Gusto for a couple of weeks.

          2 Replies
          1. re: wurstle
            melodyt1313 RE: wurstle Aug 16, 2006 12:25 AM

            thanks everyone.. I think it will be Cacio e Pepe this time and Gonzo the next... I truly love Crispo and Spigolo, so let's see how these compare...

            1. re: wurstle
              livetotravel RE: wurstle Aug 16, 2006 01:15 AM

              Yes, hold off - I'm a super-regular at Sette in Park Slope and Amanda is a certified super-star!! Gusto goers are in for a treat!!

            2. heidipie RE: melodyt1313 Aug 16, 2006 01:19 AM

              Gonzo has terrific food and poor service. And if you are seated in the main room, it is absolutely deafening.

              1. MsAlyp RE: melodyt1313 May 27, 2008 10:05 AM

                Just posted on another thread about Cacio e Pepe- very disappointing, very subpar, mediocre service, overall a waste- I wish I hadn't bothered.

                A Voce- Wonderful. Andrew Carmenelli is a fabulous talent. Always a critic's pick and their duck is to die for.

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