Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Outer Boroughs >
Apr 11, 2007 12:51 PM

First time at Roberto's...

I'm going Saturday night for the first time. What's one dish at Roberto's that makes it unique--one that would be a crime if I left there not having tried it?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Hard to say for sure because the genreal rule of thumb is to order from the list of specials that is on the blackboard, which changes frequently. There is one pasta dish that is cooked in tinfoil which is great (and I believe on the regular) menu which is great (the name escapes me). Everything elese I've always ordered as a special and haven't been in a couple of years.

    1. Have the waiter make the selections. They usually do a few signature dishes family style.

      1. Definitely check the specials first. There's always a "pasta in cartoccio" - the one in tinfoil that jdf referred to - and an agnolotti of the day. If there's osso buco on the specials, I'd consider that, and their chicken-on-the-bone specials are also worth thinking about. Specials also usually include a shrimp & scallop app and a risotto that have both been terrific.

        On the regular menu, my wife loves their version of chicken scarpariello and I like the veal "affumicato" (with sherry, smoked mozz, and prosciutto). They also do a fine veal chop.

        Enjoy - and I hope you're aware that if you don't go early (within 45 minutes of opening) or late (after 9:00), chances are you'll be waiting for quite a while.

        5 Replies
        1. re: Striver

          When do they open? We plan on going at 7, assuming that's early.

          1. re: abu applesauce

            They open at 4:00 on Saturday. We've gone there for early Sat. dinner and normally get a table right away up 'til about 5:15, at which point they're normally full and stay that way. By the time 6:00 rolls around, there's usually a number of people waiting for tables. They've got a section downstairs with additional seating that has reduced the wait a bit, but I'd guess that at 7:00 on a Saturday you're looking at a minimum 1 hour wait. You could get lucky, but I wouldn't bet on it.

            1. re: abu applesauce

              I would arrive as early as possible, especially on a Saturday where the wait can often exceed an hour. As far as the menu, I echo the recommendations to stick with the blackboard specials and definitely try the "pasta in cartoccio.” The last time I had this dish the main ingredients were cherry tomatoes and porcini mushrooms; really lovely flavors and texture. I also tried a penne dish with dried sausage that was very good.

                1. re: abu applesauce

                  I've only been once, several years ago, but the pasta in foil is still memorable.