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Motorino - how's crowd weekday lunch?

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I've never been and I've been tasked with taking an out of town company executive for great pizza. Office not that far from Motorino so want to get a read on if it's an option.

How long would wait be on a rainy day around noon? is it ever going to stop raining?
Are tables spaced enough/sound level conducive to conversation?

Keste probably a bit far. There's always Otto which I'm sure she'll love, but certainly not going there just for the pizza.

Other suggestions welcome from 8th street north to union square/west to fifth.


349 E 12th St, New York, NY 10003

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  1. I can't answer your waiting time question, since I've only been to Motorino very early for dinner, when it wasn't crowded at all. I find it a lot less frenetic than Keste (where I also went very early for dinner, and it was a mob scene). The tables at Motorino are not super close together, and it isn't very loud. My companion and I had no trouble carrying on a conversation.

    I think it will stop raining, yes, but don't quote me.

    Keste Pizza & Vino
    271 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014

    1. The few times I've been on a weekday, it's been about 1/2 empty, so no wait at all.

      In terms of conversation, it should be OK, but not great. If privacy is that important, I would go elsewhere. Photo:

      For the most space, you'd probably want the small 2-top table near the door, but, that does put you by the door (drafty, people coming and going). You can see it here:

      1 Reply
      1. re: kathryn

        Now, the tables in the photo that seat four are two tables of two. Also, near the back is a great table for two.

      2. I've been a couple times for lunch and found it mostly empty. I don't think you'll even have to wait at all.

        1. Lunches are indeed empty, and as described, not the most private setting.

          They were offering lunch specials for something like $12 with a few pizzas to choose from, and a free salad or tiramisu. I'm not sure if they're still offering it, but it could be worth asking.

          2 Replies
          1. re: sugartoof

            the lunch special is still on (as of a couple weeks ago) but i think it only includes the salad, it is still a good deal as if you were to order the sopressata picante or brussel sprouts pie without the lunch deal it would cost 4 dollars more and not include the salad, which while pretty basic - just mixed greens and lettuce - was very fresh and came with a well balanced vinagrette and even some mixed herbs (mint, basil) added to spruce up the spring mix.

            ive eaten lunch at motorino quite a few times and hardly ever had to sit next to another occupied table, but in terms of privacy that may almost be worse as its a very small room and when its empty it is quite easy to overhear whatevers being said - on busy weekend nights the music is generally a bit louder and the (hard walled) room full of people can bring the din up considerably.

            1. re: sugartoof

              They don't offer tiramisu as part of the deal anymore. Which bums me out.

            2. Thanks everyone! We went today and worked out perfectly. Got there around 12:20 and sat right down. 1 empty table next to us and 1 full but didn't feel cramped.

              Most importantly, the Margherita she had lived up to its billing! I had the soppresata which was fantastic as well.

              And it didn't rain on the way there or back to boot.

              1 Reply
              1. re: harrison

                Excellent! Glad it worked out for you.