Coco, in NYC, Arthur Avenue is the closest you'll find similar to the North End. Be sure to
visit some of the many pastry shops after your meal. Skip Artuso's though when you see it.
There's better seating elsewhere: Egidio's, DeLillo's, Palombo's, Morrone's, etc.
Browse a bit here ---> http://gridskipper.com/travel/new-york/top-picks-italian-arthur-avenue-280364.php
Browse some more here ---> http://offthebroiler.wordpress.com/20...
We've been going to Roberto's for years and have rarely been disappointed. Is it the best in NYC? No - but it's very good, the Belmont area ambience is great, and Roberto's uses the excellent local food purveyors (cheese, bread, etc.) effectively.
We almost always order from the daily specials (posted on a whiteboard and recited by the waiters), although there's nothing wrong with the regular menu selections. The homemade pastas are excellent, particularly the "in cartoccio" selection, which is steamed in foil and opened at the table. I'm also partial to their osso bucco or similarly prepared lamb shanks. Desserts are good, but you can also go for pastry and espresso at one of the numerous cafes in the area (recommend De Lillo or Morrone).
The wait on Friday or Saturday can be very long unless you get there around 5:00 or after 8:30; there's a small bar area but it gets crowded quickly; they don't take reservations, and they're not open on Sunday. Mon-Thurs is easier, although they usually offer fewer specials during the week.
I highly recommend Roberto's and I also agree that you're better off ordering from the specials. Along with the homemade pastas, I recommend their risottos and agnolotti. Last time I had dinner there I ordered a risotto with smoked duck breast, asparagus and figs that was delicious.