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Al di La

berkleybabe Dec 26, 2013 08:11 PM

Dinner tonight just exceptional. Duck Ragu maybe the best pasta I've ever had, herb risotto outstanding, saltimboca excellent. Caparccio, balacao appetizers simple and delicous.

Warm service, wonderful environment.

This may be the perfect restaurant.


  1. NYJewboy Dec 26, 2013 08:36 PM

    Yes, but the context is key. Over the years the food has spanned the range between transcendent and just good, usually in blocks of a few months up or down. My problem with the place is the noise, the tight squeeze of the tables right next to each other, and the wait. Impossible to have a conversation in that place, and if you don't like children...oh boy.

    5 Replies
    1. re: NYJewboy
      famdoc Dec 27, 2013 02:17 AM

      The adjacent wine bar may be the answer to at least some of your problems with Al di La: same menu, often no wait, lower noise level. I'm with berkleybabe: more than a decade after it appeared, despite the dozens of alternatives along Fifth Ave., Al di La remains the meighborhood's standby for excellent dining.

      1. re: famdoc
        sam1 Dec 27, 2013 09:44 AM

        its excellent but the menu doesnt change often enough to make it vital. i used to live a block away and would go often. now, i go maybe 1x a year and its always solid but its the same old al di la as it was in 2004.

        1. re: sam1
          famdoc Dec 27, 2013 10:12 AM

          "the menu doesn't change often enough to make it vital"

          a plate of the casunzei or malfatti and the bacalao and a glass of wine and I feel vitalized. Let those items stay on the menu forever.

          1. re: famdoc
            sam1 Jan 7, 2014 12:36 PM

            agreed. i went to bar corvo this past summer and their alternative versions of some of al di la's dishes just pale in comparison to the original.

        2. re: famdoc
          foodwhisperer Jan 4, 2014 11:58 PM

          Thanks for the info on the wine bar next door, I didn't realize it was there, and often just don't think of going to Al di La because it is always packed. I end up at Osteria Convivium but I really like Al di La

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