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Babbo lunch or Scarpetta dinner for birthday?

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Taking out gf for birthday meal. Was only able to snag Babbo for lunch. Also got reservation for dinner at Scarpetta.

Which one should I choose?

Any good recommendations from Babbo's lunch menu? Will definitely get beef cheek ravioli, grilled octopus (which seems to be an entree for lunch instead of app). Any other appetizer or pasta/entree recommendations? Unfortunately the 1pound lobster spaghetti seems to be unavailable for lunch.

At Scarpetta, was thinking the octopus, polenta, and maybe short ribs for apps, then spaghetti and something else for entree (maybe short rib pasta).

Trying to figure out whether Babbo lunch food > Scarpetta dinner food for bday meal. Thanks all! Really appreciate it!

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  1. (Also, wine list not a big deal for us, since we will probably just get a glass or two, definitely not pairings. And for dessert, I just assumed those are pretty similar across the two places, but correct me if I'm wrong)... Thanks guys!

    1. After a ton of research trying to make the same decision for MY birthday, I decided that while there are folks who think the food at Babbo is better, most agree that that the food at Scarpetta is still really delicious so I chose Scarpetta because for my birthday I wanted a more elegant, celebratory atmosphere and didn't want to loud music that folks talk about at Babbo. And dinner feels more special for a birthday celebration meal. We're going to dinner at Scarpetta on April 19 and I'll be sure to report back.

      4 Replies
      1. re: plafield

        While Babbo is fantastic, and not nearly as loud as some people think it is in my opinion, yes - birthdays warrant dinner, not lunch. Unless it's a really extravagant EMP kind of lunch, perhaps.

        1. re: plafield

          In my experience, the music at Babbo isn't really that loud, it is the choice of music that sometimes clashes with "a nice night out." GnR at a moderate volume. We usually sit upstairs.

          The first floor of Babbo is loud but a lot of that is noise from the bar and walk in area. The second floor is much better.

          Related discussion from 2011:
          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/758509

          1. re: kathryn

            "The first floor of Babbo is loud but a lot of that is noise from the bar and walk in area. The second floor is much better."

            Couldn't agree more. Word for word what I would have said if kathryn hadn't beaten me to the punch. :)

          2. re: plafield

            Thank you so much! Great insights!