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Piccola Venezia vs. Parkside and Trattoria L'incontro

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Hey everyone. My birthday is coming up and I was looking into going to Piccola Venezia. I have never been there but have been to Parkside and Trattoria L'incontro and enjoyed them. I was Wondering how it compared to both of those. I am also wondering what the go to dishes are there and if there are any better options for italian in Queens. Let me know. Thanks!

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  1. I really think Piccolo is the best of the three, but it is pricier than Parkside. Just realize it is really old school. The decor is dated and the crowd is older. When they have suckling pig as a special it is great. Last time out I tried the veal paillard and the chop was huge and perfectly prepared with a salad and parmigiana cheese topping. My wife had scallops and couldn't finish it because they gave so many scallops. You can't go wrong with their seafood choices. Go early because parking is tough if you want to avoid valet.

    1 Reply
    1. re: knarfwhite

      It has been a few years since I've been to Piccolo but have to agree. Piccolo is one of the best Italian restaurants I've ever been to (if not the best). It still holds up after all these years. We had amazing langoustine, several pastas with seafood and risotto when we went. I'd choose Piccolo over any of the Italian restaurants in Manhattan at 1.5x to 3x the price like Marea, Babbo, Il Mulino, Scarpetta, etc..

      I would see what specials they have. They will also make you a nice pasta sampler plate with a few different types of pasta if you want to share and have the kitchen split up the portions.

      If they had a place like Piccolo where I live in OC I would leave work right now to go eat. And I'd also be 10 to 15 lbs heavier.

    2. You should try Rudar Soccer Club. It is cheaper then Piccolo Venezia and really good.

      1. I find Piccola Venezia and Parkside very similar in atmosphere and food. The prices didn't seem that much different. Personally I like Don Peppe's better than both of those

        3 Replies
        1. re: foodwhisperer

          IMHO the food at DP doesn't stand up to PV.
          Parkside yes.
          No one talks about Walter Conti's place in Little Neck. Walter was the maitre'd ay PV for many years (I've known him since I started going to PV in 1974 as a teenager) and opened Conti's about 10(?)years ago. Excellent food and atmosphere. Best gnocchi in a veal ragout I've ever tasted.

          1. re: johnk

            Yes, food is very good at Conti's; but don't go on Sat. night unless you like noise and VERY close quarters. It almost seems as if they put in a few extra tables.
            I thin Il Toscano in Douglaston is better. They have a great priced fixed on Sun. with many choices.

            1. re: johnk

              I'll have to try Conti's, DP's baked clams and linguini with white clam sauce stand up to anyone's IMHO.

          2. I finally made it to Piccolo Venezia for the first time for my own birthday recently, and we had a wonderful, very old-school Italian, meal. Not inexpensive, but everything I tasted was wonderful. I'll be looking for an opportunity to go back.

            I had the Tricolore salad and the Fusi alla Grappa, Istrian bowtie-shaped pasta with mushrooms, grappa and parmigiano. Delicious! I'd have myself seated at a table there re-ordering both right now, if I could...

            1. I think L'Incontro blows the other 2 away. Piccolo used to be amazing. The last time we went (granted a few years ago) the entire meal was very mediocre from the food to the service. L'Incontro, though, is a different experience. It is not an old school, red sauce Italian place.