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Locanda Verde or Osteria Morini?

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My husband and I are visiting some friends in NYC the last weekend in October. We're looking for a nice italian restaurant on Saturday night for the 4 of us. I feel like I've narrowed it down to two places, Locanda Verde or Osteria Morini. Which would you pick? Cost is not an concern, more looking for delicious food, great atmosphere (modern & trendy but not full of hipsters!) and a nice wine list. We're in our mid-30s.

Of those two, are there any other places I should consider? We originally were going to try Malatesta but LV and OM look more "special". We're staying in Chelsea and would prefer to eat downtown since we'll be going out after dinner.

Thanks in advance!

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  1. I like both LV and OM but you might not find them all that exceptional compared to Philadelphia's Italian restaurants.

    Perla and Scarpetta would be better choices for great food and a hip but low key vibe. Lincoln and Marea as well, though both are midtown and rather corporate.

    5 Replies
    1. re: Lacrosse_Gastronomic

      I dont get to dine out much in Philly, it's not easy to get in and out of the city from where I live. The menu and images of Scarpetta look perfect.

      While looking at Scarepetta, I came across L'artusi which has very high marks on Yelp. Is that worth considering?

      1. re: obx_nancy

        It's delicious but a notch down in terms of "special occasion," compared to Scarpetta and LV, etc.

        I like Osteria Morini but find it excessively cramped, very loud, and a bit overpriced.

        1. re: kathryn

          LV is booked...only one table available on 10/27 and it's at 10:30pm. I'm kind of surprised but I guess it's that good!

          With that said, I got a table at Scarpetta for 10/27. Scarpetta is not stuffy, right? Some of the pictures of patrons and their website looks a little "up tight".

          1. re: obx_nancy

            Like Osteria Morini, LV can be extremely loud. Scarpetta is not as noisy, and overall more refined, but not stuffy.

        2. re: obx_nancy

          Yes L'Artusi is great. It's more casual than Scarpetta.

      2. Go to Locanda Verde.
        Osteria Morini is not that good.

        1. Food is very good at at Locanda Verde but the service is not so good; it can even be bad. Read some of the September posts in this thread:
          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/852565
          We've been Osteria Morini once and enjoyed the food, but never felt the pull to go back. Not sure why, but that tells you something.

          I would consider Maialino in Gramercy Park. Excellent food and service as is always the case at a Danny Meyer restaurant.
          http://www.maialinonyc.com/

          1. Just to add another opinion, I've never had any service problems at LV, and love the food (never been to OM). I realize you've called and they're booked--which is pretty much always the case, on weekends at least--but if you decide you'd rather go there over the others, try calling back occasionally for cancellations (especially on the date you're looking to go there). I've had luck that way.

            1. Gah! I had just settled on Osteria Morini for one of my pasta meals in NYC this trip. I've read many reviews and the gripes generally seem to be about service. The menu (I would be ordering pasta only, no mains) appeals to me more that LV's.

              (FWIW, I have been to Scarpetta, Mailiano, Babbo previously).

              5 Replies
              1. re: pizzajunkie

                OM's pasta is good though it can seem cloyingly rich compared to Scarpetta, Mailiano, Babbo. But that's just the Emiglia Romagna style I guess.

                1. re: Lacrosse_Gastronomic

                  Rich is totally fine with me, but I hear what you're saying. (I have dreams about Babbo's mint love letters!)

                2. re: pizzajunkie

                  Last time I was in NYC, we went to Otto. While it was great, I was looking for something different. I found the pasta a little boring although the antipasta was heavenly. I was leaning more towards an Emiglia Romagna type restaurant since my husband loves a good steak.

                  But I am excited to try Scarpetta, the menu looks great!

                  1. re: obx_nancy

                    Both Osteria Morini and Da Andrea are Emiglia Romagna food. I personally like both, I also can't stand the service at LV. The food isn't all that good either IMO. and it is overpriced. Three blocks from LV is Wolfgang's if you want a good steak.

                    1. re: foodwhisperer

                      foodwhisperer - I am making a note about Wolfgang's for the steak for future reference, thanks!
                      However, for OM (or LV) I would be eating pasta only, no mains. It seems from what I've read, that whatever problems people had with OM, most would agree that the pasta at OM was great, if nothing else.

                3. if you want "balsamic glaze" squirted on your food, Morini. If you just want good food, Locanda Verde.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: DavyTheFatBoy

                    oh my! LOL Well, let me look at the LV menu again....

                  2. The pastasa at Osteria Morini are very good. Michael White can cook pasta, even whenhe isnt in the kitchen. We were a group of six and every pasta was very good. So too was their porchetta. In turn, their wine list was over priced.

                    Locanda Verde is more of a scene. Ithink their food, of late, is more hit and miss. And their menu isnotlarge. Servuce has been greatto Ok. Both spots are loud ithas been the casefor quitesome time that LV releases decent time reservationsonly to customerw it knows or who know someone to ask for.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: comiendosiempre

                      good to know about the pasta at OM, thanks!