Italian: So Easy but So Hard: Need Advice
I know this has probably been discussed here many times before so please bear with me. I am trying to find an upscale, elegant Italian Restaurant in Manhattan that serves authentic italian [baked clams, antipasto, veal parm. etc.], but am willing to compromise as long as it isn't excessively nouveau [A Voce, Babbo, etc]. Everytime I read reviews and get set on a place [Felidia, Il Mulino etc.], I read a corresponding horror story. Due to the fact one diner is in a wheelchair, San Domenico, Scalini Fideli etc., are out. Price isn't an issue. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Paola's- upscale traditional Italian neighborhood restaurant on E 84th St.
Campanile- traditional Italian-American menu (which I think is what you are looking for), cozy, more casual than Paola's. E 29th St.
Both of these places are wheelchair-friendly inside, and I think the entrances are ok, too, but I can't recall whether or not there is a step or two... Give them a call to be sure.
30 E 29th St, New York, NY 10016
1295 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10028
I love Campanile and agree that the traditional Italian fare serverd there is excellent. Plus, the wait staff couldn't be nicer or more efficient. There are no steps at the entry and, as vvvindaloo mentioned, the dining room is fairly large with well-spaced tables, so there is plenty of maneuverable room for a wheelchair. However, it is definitely not an upscale place, and the decor is, in my view, pleasantly old-fashioned rather than elegant.
One place that comes to mind is Prima Vera - I know they have baked clams and antipasto - and I bet if they don't have veal parmesan on the menu, if you called they would make it for you. My husband and I went as someone's guest, and we had a lovely evening with some terrific food - I was pleasantly surprised. It seems quite clubby, but none of us had been there been there before and were very well treated. Pricey though.