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Parents insisting on Little Italy - please help with alternatives

e
emgoodman Jun 21, 2012 01:55 PM

Hi everone - My parents are insisting that they want to go to Little Italy for dinner on Sat. night. Despite my warnings, they're insisting because they want to sit outside, see the lights and see people walking around. I'd love to give them an alternative suggestion -- does anyone have a suggestion for reasonabley priced, Italian or American that can meet their outdoors fun atmosphere request? An backyard garden isn't sufficient, they want street action! Thanks!

  1. scoopG Jun 22, 2012 09:11 AM

    In homage to Brian S., perhaps Il Cortile might fit the bill. Still there, outside seating available as well.
    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/487229

    1 Reply
    1. re: scoopG
      waxyjax Jun 22, 2012 03:31 PM

      if your parents don't care that much about food, the upside of dining in little italy on a saturday is that it might actually be less of a pain getting a table than any place that's popular with the internet-reading foodie population.

      otherwise, maybe they'd be into al fresco dining in the high-action east village? Cucina di Pesce (Italian AND historical), Frank (italian) and Mermaid Inn (new england seafood) have sidewalk seating. Cacio e Pepe didn't last time I was there, but perhaps that's changed. Cafe Orlin (american with some Israeli touches) and Cafe Mogador (affordable Moroccan) on St. Mark's have dependable food and sidewalk tables, too.

    2. i
      ilovetoeat23 Jun 22, 2012 07:46 AM

      I recommend Da Nico. Personally I think its the only restaurant worth going to in LI if someone insists on eating there. They have street dining as well as a garden in the back.
      Mulberry between Grand and Broome

      1. m
        mangiare24 Jun 22, 2012 06:15 AM

        I have not eaten in Little Italy in well over 25 years, so I cannot suggest a restaurant there. I'm sure someon on CH will eventually come up with a good place though.

        If your parents are to be swayed away from Little Italy, may I suggest either Da Silvano or Bar Pitti? They are right next to one another and if memory serves me right, they both have outdoor seating. I have not been to either in a couple of years, so perhaps someone who has eaten at either restaurant recently can offer their opinions.

        The bottom line: no matter where you wind up, just relax and enjoy the evening with your parents. Buon appetito!

        1. v
          von_levi Jun 21, 2012 04:36 PM

          I agree with RCC. Your parents might have a romantic view of what they think the Little Italy dining experience is like, but if that's what they have their heart set on, you might as well just do it.

          How about this: Do what your parents want for dinner, but take them to a place of your choice for dessert?

          1. r
            RCC Jun 21, 2012 03:01 PM

            Not that I can recommend places to eat at in L Italy, but why not follow your parents' wishes and ask here, instead, for the best options in Little Italy. It seems like they're after the allure and "significance" of the neighborhood and want to soak in it. In spite of how low posters here regard the restaurants there, the place still has that old New York City significance. Seems like this request is all about you and what you want.

            3 Replies
            1. re: RCC
              Peter Cuce Jun 22, 2012 05:49 AM

              That's kind of harsh. This is Chowhound, not Oprah. Let's give the OP what he/she asked for if possible.

              1. re: Peter Cuce
                r
                RCC Jun 22, 2012 03:38 PM

                This is not Oprah? Tsk, tsk, I was waiting to receive a car or an iPhone for participating!
                To hell with those parents!
                Seriously, I agree with you.

              2. re: RCC
                f
                foodwhisperer Jun 22, 2012 09:04 PM

                hmmm I wonder if Oprah comes on CH,, She does like to eat. Little Italy as most agree, isn't the place to eat,,,There are places that once we thought were good Like Umberto's where Joe Gallo was gunned down, and the owners left the bullet holes for a long time as a tourist attraction. Or there was a day when Vincent's was good for Scungilli, or fried calamari over a biscuit with the hottest sauce..It's not good anymore ,,and they rip you off.
                So OP,, Alternatives is what you should pursue. Rubirosa was recommended,, I think technically you can even tell your parents Rubirosa is in Little Italy ,,its just about there,,it is Mulberry Street. You can take them to Little Italy for dessert,,, to the famous Cafe Ferrara or Cafe Roma,,,they aren't great ,,but they are OK,,, and the coffee is good there.
                You can take them to the W. Village,,, it was once a very Italian neighborhood. You could eat at Bar Pitti, or Da Silvano ( maybe see a movie star),,, or go to the old school places like Villa Mosconi, they may feel like they are in Little Italy,, Tell them Lucky Luciano lived in that neighborhood. Show them the Tiro a Segno Gun club, Lee Iacocca is a member and Vila Mosconi is right next door. D'Andrea has gal good food not far away,,or back to Lafayette St and go to Osteria Morini. There are many Alternatives

              3. t
                tex.s.toast Jun 21, 2012 02:57 PM

                Can you take them on a walk through little italy and up mulberry for dinner at Rubirosa?

                1 Reply
                1. re: tex.s.toast
                  LeahBaila Jun 22, 2012 06:39 AM

                  Amen. I LOVE that idea!

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