HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >
What's your latest food project? Tell us about it
TELL US

Your Top 5 Italian Restaurants Below 50th Street?

e
elskin Nov 7, 2012 11:44 AM

Your Top 5 Italian Restaurants Below 50th Street?

Thank you in advance.

  1. a
    alepenazzi Nov 12, 2012 01:32 PM

    Yesterday I went with some friends for brunch at the newly opened Giovanni Rana restaurant at Chelsea Market.

    We had one of the most delicious authentic, simple, true italian meals of the last few months.

    We shared a few appetizers and then we ordered the pumpkin ravioli, the ravioli al brasato and the cappelletti al prosciutto. They were all perfect and just really good.
    The desserts were even better, a simple tiramisu and a trio of panna cottas, both amazing.

    I know it sounds like an advertisement and I can't comment about the secondi (meats, fish, etc) but I honestly just found my new place for an authentic, reasonably priced, good italian fix.

    PS they carry what I personally think is the best prosecco from italy: Valdo. Give it a try.

    1 Reply
    1. re: alepenazzi
      f
      foodwhisperer Nov 12, 2012 10:01 PM

      Sounds interesting, Although I am not a fan of prosecco, I surely am a fan of authentic italian food, in a "below midtown" area. Thanks.

    2. Ziggy41 Nov 11, 2012 10:58 AM

      Scarpetta
      Del posto
      Marea (rule break worthy - just a few blocks)
      Da Andrea
      Rubirosa (not in the same league as the others but we had a fun dinner there)

      Between del posto and Scarpetta I'd choose Scarpetta as well

      1. a
        atlantic Nov 9, 2012 04:37 PM

        Locanda verde, Torrisi Italian Specialties , Perla, Del Posto, Scarpetta.

        1. d
          DavyTheFatBoy Nov 8, 2012 06:22 PM

          I Sodi
          Bar Pitti
          Inoteca
          Pizza Roma
          Babbo

          1. ttoommyy Nov 8, 2012 01:02 PM

            In no particular order:

            Otto
            Manzo
            Maialino
            Del Posto
            'inoteca

            1. Wilfrid Nov 8, 2012 01:02 PM

              SD26 is missing from the lists, as usual.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Wilfrid
                Spiritchaser Nov 9, 2012 04:12 AM

                Good point, love thier salumi and cheese selections

              2. a
                alepenazzi Nov 8, 2012 12:41 PM

                Del Posto
                Manzo
                Lupa
                Cipriani Downtown

                1. Spiritchaser Nov 8, 2012 10:52 AM

                  A Voce
                  Ai Fiori
                  Ciano
                  Maialino

                  1. h
                    Hey19 Nov 8, 2012 07:10 AM

                    50th seems like a very arbitrary street to choose, but for me, in no order:
                    Hearth
                    Dell'anima
                    Locanda Verde
                    Torrisi
                    so many, Ill flip a coin and say Rubirosa?

                    1. p
                      Pan Nov 8, 2012 02:46 AM

                      I don't think I've seen any mention of Ai Fiori so far. That's my favorite to date. Scarpetta is also excellent and I liked my one trip to Babbo but it was a few years ago.

                      I like Crispo fine as a mid-priced Italian restaurant that's dependable and has some decent wine and good grappas, but it is not in a comparable category. I go there now and then to enjoy myself with friends or relatives, but I wouldn't go there for a really special occasion. Similarly, I like Inoteca as a place to go to (usually late at night) for a good snack or meal with my girlfriend, before or after hitting some bars on the Lower East Side. I could imagine going there for someone's birthday, but their food, while nearly always quite good, does not have the level of complexity or the "wow" factor a great dish at a place like Ai Fiori or Scarpetta has.

                      There are restaurants that are excellent for what they are. I don't have the money to eat out at expensive restaurants every day, even if I wanted to (and I don't think I'd want to). But there's a reason they are more expensive, in these cases.

                      1. m
                        mla19 Nov 7, 2012 06:37 PM

                        Perla
                        Osterini Morini
                        Maialino
                        Torrisi
                        Del Posto

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: mla19
                          p
                          plafield Nov 7, 2012 07:37 PM

                          I'll jump on here with a question: For a special birthday, looking for more upscale/refined but delicious would you choose Del Posto or Scarpetta and why?

                          1. re: plafield
                            a
                            arepo Nov 7, 2012 07:59 PM

                            To me Scarpetta is more innovative.

                            1. re: arepo
                              NYJewboy Nov 13, 2012 04:59 PM

                              I never understood why innovation was a virtue. Different can be terrible too, you know. I guess I am a traditional type of guy.

                            2. re: plafield
                              ttoommyy Nov 12, 2012 10:24 AM

                              Of the two, I've only been to Del Posto and can only speak to that restaurant. For "upscale/refined" you can't do much better than Del Posto. Absolutely beautiful space with wonderful service. You get what you pay for. I've been to Del Posto 5 or six times: for dinner, for the prix fixe lunch and for Easter afternoon dinner. Each time I have been blown away by the food. I am not putting down Scarpetta at all, as I have not been there. It is on my short list though and hope to get there soon.

                          2. f
                            foodwhisperer Nov 7, 2012 01:30 PM

                            Babbo
                            Da Andrea
                            Bar Pitti
                            Da Silvano
                            Osteria Morini

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: foodwhisperer
                              NYJewboy Nov 13, 2012 04:59 PM

                              There's Da Andrea again. Have to try it. Any recs there?

                              1. re: NYJewboy
                                Ziggy41 Nov 14, 2012 06:06 AM

                                Tigelle, pappardelle with sausage and truffle oil

                            2. Motosport Nov 7, 2012 01:20 PM

                              If you don't need the glitz:
                              DaCiro
                              I Trulli
                              and Marcony all rock our world for nice neighborhood restaurants.

                              1. p
                                peter j Nov 7, 2012 12:24 PM

                                Del Posto
                                Perla
                                Manzo
                                Babbo
                                Scarpetta

                                1. t
                                  thegforceny Nov 7, 2012 12:08 PM

                                  In order of preference:
                                  Del Posto
                                  Perla
                                  dell'anima
                                  Scarpetta
                                  'inoteca

                                  12 Replies
                                  1. re: thegforceny
                                    a
                                    arepo Nov 7, 2012 12:13 PM

                                    Price friendly fabulous food Crispos at 14th.

                                    1. re: arepo
                                      t
                                      thegforceny Nov 7, 2012 12:54 PM

                                      I find Crispo's food ham-fisted and the space crazy loud. The times I've frequented it was full of loud, overly raucous people, of the type usually travelling via a B or T.

                                      1. re: thegforceny
                                        s
                                        Sneakeater Nov 7, 2012 02:49 PM

                                        Just piling on because this is probably the first time I've ever read anything on this board about Crispo that I agreed with.

                                        1. re: Sneakeater
                                          t
                                          tgseaver Nov 7, 2012 04:32 PM

                                          What is ham -fisted? We have reservations for Sat. night, should I cancel?

                                          1. re: tgseaver
                                            t
                                            thegforceny Nov 7, 2012 04:36 PM

                                            Lacks finesse. Sacrifices top ingredients and sophistication for excess which certain people think means 'delicious": tons of oil, cheese, frying, salt, cream, butter.

                                            1. re: thegforceny
                                              r
                                              RCC Nov 8, 2012 07:39 AM

                                              Didn't know what "ham-fisted" is until now. But completely agree. But, I'll be blunt ... Crispo is jsut OK , but not that good.

                                            2. re: tgseaver
                                              a
                                              arepo Nov 7, 2012 07:58 PM

                                              I'll be there Saturday night too. I simply love the way they do food. It is a loud, noisy place but well worth every penny because it is not over the top -- it is reasonable and really good Italian food. It is not an upscale dining venue. It is more for a youthful crowd (not that I am!!)
                                              If you decide not to cancel, try their Hanger steak and brussel sprouts. Yum!

                                              1. re: arepo
                                                t
                                                tgseaver Nov 8, 2012 03:54 AM

                                                I'm going! Sounds like this is just what we are looking for,thanks.

                                                1. re: tgseaver
                                                  l
                                                  lewinters Nov 8, 2012 09:36 AM

                                                  Went there once, enjoyed the food, have not been back but look forward to the opportunity.

                                                  1. re: tgseaver
                                                    a
                                                    arepo Nov 9, 2012 04:26 AM

                                                    I'll probably be sitting in that middle room that holds six people, across from the kitchen. If you feel like it, stick your head in and say hi and tell me how you liked it.
                                                    (expect noise, it is a happening kind of place)

                                                    1. re: arepo
                                                      t
                                                      tgseaver Nov 11, 2012 08:25 AM

                                                      Went last night and loved it! So I guess I am ham-fisted lover lol.

                                                      1. re: tgseaver
                                                        a
                                                        arepo Nov 11, 2012 09:43 AM

                                                        Yippee! I am glad you saw what I saw in the place despite some off-putting comments.
                                                        Good Italian food with a decent "sticker price" doesn't come around that often in NY so grab it, says I, despite the noise factor.

                                      2. a
                                        arturusthorne Nov 7, 2012 11:53 AM

                                        Scarpetta
                                        Ciano
                                        Maialino
                                        Piccolo Angelo
                                        Torrisi

                                        Depends what you're looking for, though, as certain of those places are quite different from the others in terms of pricing, formality and style of cooking...

                                        Show Hidden Posts