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Help - re-do birthday dinner: epic Italian - mostly pastas?

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I want to take my husband to dinner for his birthday, and we had a fail at a recent Italian restaurant (must've been an off-night for Dell-Anima). I want to go to one of the big, visually impressive places, but they all seem to have limited pastas (Scarpetta, Del Posto). I'm looking for something like Babbo, which we loved a few years ago, but I don't know that I can get a reservation in a week (it has to be for this upcoming Friday or Saturday, otherwise I'll be going into the hospital to give birth to our first child!).

He prefers the more classic pastas to the innovative ones, too.

Thanks!

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  1. Scarpetta
    Marea
    Ai Fiori

    A step down
    L'artusi (but same owners as dell'anima)

    1. If Babbo's huge pasta menu (16 options) is your bar, you're setting the bar really, really high. Scarpetta has 7 pastas on the menu. Del Posto has 10, counting both sections.

      Novita might work, with 12 pastas on the menu.
      http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/10/din...

      Marea might work, it has 14 pastas, but Ai Fiori has only 7 pastas.

      You might also want to think about the pasta tasting menu at Maialino on Sundays.

      1 Reply
      1. re: kathryn

        I would highly recommend Marea, but you should check their menu to see if they are too innovative for husband. Michael White is in a class by himself as far as pastas are concerned. Ai Fiori would be my second choice.

      2. Call Babbo, tell them your story and that when you arrive they can have a female staff member confirm it is not a pillow under your shirt.... They always have walk in tables in the super loud downstairs.... May be worth a shot

        1. We walked into Babbo earlyish (around 5 or 6pm) on a Friday night and were able to be seated in the walk-in area after roughly half an hour, so that could be worth a shot?