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Ciano - Excellent meal,

I took some friends from out of town to Ciano for dinner Sat. night, was worried it might be a "scene" as it just opened and would be mobbed/disorganized because of the newness and, especially when they telephoned at 3:00 and asked if we could come at 8:30 for our 8:00 reservation, which we preferred not to. That being said, when we walked in promptly at 8:00 we were immediately seated in a nice round booth (there we 5 of us) by the open wood burning stove, which did give off a bit of heat to the one seat closest to it. My husband sat there, he liked the warmth, I on the other hand would have melted.

So, onto the food, the bread coming out of that stove is amazing, you could make a whole meal out of it, especially with the ricotta spread that accompanies it, but we did restrain and ordered salads to start, the caesar was another "wow", the anchovies were tender and not that salty, my dh has the veal meatballs on a bed of polenta, another thumbs up. For mains, we all had different pastas with the exception of one friend who ordered the roast chicken, who shared. That roast chicken was tender and cooked to perfection, I would go back just to have that, and I rarely order chicken out. I had the pasta with the duck bolanese, very rich but good, my husband has gnocchis in a butter/black truffle sauce, which were good, but not the most wow, our other two friends had the pasta with sausage and the ravioli, both cleaned their plates. For dessert we shared a tiramisu, which was semi-frozen, we wiped the plate clean.

The service was excellent, our server Cheryl was a lot of fun, no attitude at all, we also had two bottles of wine which the sommelier helped us with, again, great attitude and was very helpful with wines in our price range ($40-$50). They also have two prices for wines, you can get 1/2 bottles so if you'd like to mix, they make it very easy.

Dinner for the five of us came out to $300.00. I thought it was reasonable for the quality, service, etc., will definitely go back.

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Ciano
45 E 22nd St, New York, NY 10010

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  1. Thank you for this complete and thoughtful post! I am so happy to read all this as I have been waiting and waiting for them to open. We have a res in early Dec and now I am really, really excited. I hope it remains as good as this.

    1 Reply
    1. re: MRS

      You're welcome, I hope you enjoy it and have as much fun as we did!

    2. We also had dinner at Ciano the other night. We also thought the meal was excellent.

      They spent a lot of money redoing the old Beppe spot. Ciano is warm and welcoming, particularly on a cold night with the large fireplace ablaze. Service was very good, we were impressed on that score. Even the front of the room staff were on the ball, welcoming.
      The restaurant is open only a few short weeks but, obviously, the waiters are not newbies.

      The menu has much on offer. Starters were uniformly good. Had a great squid salad; hard to describe but very well done. Light, tasty, impressive. Shrimp polpette likewise were light, excellent. Good selection of crostinis, the chicken liver one was also very good. The famous meatballs on polenta too were great. You can make a meal of those. Rich, unctuous, perfect comfort food.

      Main dishes: the lobster is great Large portion, well prepared, great taste. The duck ragu pasta was good, but not great. The consistency of the ragu was a bit odd, and I thought the dish was well on the salty side. Great breads are on offer.

      The wine list is well done, reasonable. Very friendly, knowledgeable wine steward. And, as one reviewer has mentioned elsewhere, many half bottles are offered, at half the price of the full bottle, a rare sight on NYC wine lists. Terrific for trying new wines or mixing and matching.

      Frozen tiramisu was very good, good coffee. Considering all the food and wine we ordered and enjoyed, we thought the final tab reasonable for such a spot. We will be back. They start to serve lunch in a few weeks time, we were told.

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      Ciano
      45 E 22nd St, New York, NY 10010

      2 Replies
      1. re: comiendosiempre

        Agree with the others. We ate at Ciano last night and had a really excellent, notable meal. Everything we ate was suburb. As other posters have mentioned, the restaurant has a very reasonable and varied wine list. I also enjoyed an apricot ginger Bellini to start. The bread plate and truffle butter are to die for. Unfortunately I couldn't stop myself from eating it and got a bit too full.

        We ordered the Caesar salad (perfect blend of crisp lettuce, crunchy croutons, creamy dressing and anchovy) and we then split the veal meatball over pollenta and the scallops with hazelnuts, brussel sprouts and squash. Both were terrific but I preferred the scallops b/c the preparation was so unique. We then split two pastas - a tomato based sauce with sausage and brocolli rabe and a special pasta with dungess crab and fennel. Both were wonderfully flavorful and light. To finish, at our waitress' suggestion, we had the Apple Napoleon. Yum! We also were given a complimentary Italian sweet bread of some sort.

        A great meal, especially for such a new spot. The room was also beautiful and cozy. A large fireplace in the center of the dining room really hit the spot for a winter night. Service was warm and friendly but casual (which was a bit strange given the somewhat stuffy vibe and clientel but it worked for us).

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        Ciano
        45 E 22nd St, New York, NY 10010

        1. re: mla19

          Well this is a very nice review, but I'm sure you meant that everything you ate was SUPERB, right? :)

      2. We had a wonderful dinner at Ciano in late November. Chef Shea Galante's cuisine is seriously delicious. Service was very cordial, attentive, and professional. The ambiance is warm and inviting. Not a hint of stuffiness from our perspective. Ciano will definitely be a regular stop on our dining rotation.

        Photos of our dinner at Ciano can be viewed here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/11863391...

        http://thewizardofroz.wordpress.com

        5 Replies
        1. re: RGR

          $300 for 5 people, sounds magical to me. I need a lesson on how to spend less money at restaurants. Thanks for the review and the inspiration to have a great meal for $60 a person. I spent over $200 at Ciano for 2 people.

          1. re: foodwhisperer

            I don't know where you got the impression that there were 5 people at that dinner. There were only two of us. I don't remember precisely what we paid, but I can assure you it was nowhere near as inexpensive as $60pp. Most likely close to what you spent.

            Ciano does, however, have one of the best lunch deals in town. We've done the 3-course Daily Market Menu for $20.12 -- a steal for cuisine of such high caliber.

            Ciano lunch photos: http://www.flickr.com/photos/11863391...

            http://thewizardofroz.wordpress.com

            1. re: RGR

              sorry RGR, I should have replied to the OP who said "Dinner for the five of us came out to $300.00. I thought it was reasonable for the quality, service, etc., will definitely go back."
              that was what I was referring to. Sorry for the confusion

              1. re: foodwhisperer

                No problem, fw. I never thought to look at the original post, but I now see what you were referring to. That $300 for 5 people does seem rather strange as Ciano is not an inexpensive restaurant.

                http://thewizardofroz.wordpress.com

                1. re: RGR

                  I know i keep thinking I'm doing something wrong, I never get away cheap. French Laundry , Louis XV, Quilted Giraffe I think were my most expensive meals of all time. Somewhere around $500 a head

        2. Ciano gets two stars from the New York Times.

          http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/12/din...

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          Ciano
          45 E 22nd St, New York, NY 10010

          1 Reply
          1. re: fm1963

            good find they literally just posted that today!

            http://exm.nr/hQ2gdp

          2. well that does it. i just made a reservation for friday night dinner next month. all of this swooning talk re: ciano means i have to check it out.

            ::hoards cash::