New York City boasts many classic Italian restaurants with timeless charm and recipes that taste like mom used to make.
Try Carmine’s for an exciting family dinner experience! Enjoy their popular Linguine with Clam Sauce or Veal Scaloppini before finishing up with one of their delectable homemade Pies for dessert!
1. Il Buco Alimentari e Vineria
Il Buco’s offshoot Alimentaria successfully marries the Italian market (Alimentaria), wine-centric restaurant (Vineria), and gourmet food pantry (Alimentaria) together into an uncluttered two-room space that delights the senses, similar to Dean & DeLuca but with more selection of high-end jams, preserves and oils. At its back half is its dining room, where diners can participate in a seasonal menu featuring salumi/cheese boards and small sharing plates from wood-burning oven/rotisserie roasts!
Visitors to the restaurant can grab a bite on the go from its front counter, which offers a hearty Italian country breakfast (try the baked eggs “al forno”) in the morning and Roman-style cacao e pepe or spaghetti with lemons and shavings of bottarga at lunch or dinner. A new chef has taken charge, adding her signature twist with refreshing recipes inspired by classic, hearty classics while providing them with a light touch and spontaneity.
Simple pasta is an ideal fit for this restaurant, showcasing ingredients from its pantry up front: busiate curls are wrapped around top-shelf anchovies and cauliflower; bucatini alla gricia offers a porky take on classic cacio e pepe with Romano cheese and coarse-ground black pepper for a flavorful bite supper or shared warm-ups for larger proteins.
Tucked away on cobblestone Bond Street in one of New York City’s less-than-stylish neighborhoods, this restaurant has long been a local favorite. Their kitchen keeps up with their customers’ requests by creating an expansive menu filled with rustic Italian dishes – which can often leave them coming back again and again for dinner! Though usually packed for dinner time, their lively atmosphere and comfortable seating arrangements make this one of the top Italian eateries in NYC.
2. Malatesta Trattoria
Food at this eatery is deliciously filling and flavorful, featuring delicious dishes such as gnocchi, tagliatelle, and piadinas. This restaurant has an inviting ambiance, with amiable and helpful staff members – the ideal spot for enjoying a delectable meal and great wine.
Finding authentic Italian cuisine can be challenging in New York City, but knowing where to look is possible. New York has something to satisfy everyone, from informal trattorias to old-school red sauce institutions.
La Masseria, in Little Italy, is one of the city’s premier Italian eateries. Boasting exposed brick and a stunning atrium garden, this family-owned establishment serves lunch and dinner seven days a week; their menu boasts everything from homemade fettuccine with wild mushrooms and sausage to flavor-packed puttanesca and filet mignon topped off with rich tomato sauce – an experience to savor!
The Village Voice, Eater NY, and Brooklyn Magazine have recognized this neighborhood favorite in Brooklyn. Specializing in Tuscan classics with first-rate ingredients – its menu boasts dishes like Amatriciana pasta and Lamb Chops, “a Scottadito.” Both should not be missed!
Malatesta Alimentari e Vineria and Spaghetti Incident on the Lower East Side and Bedford-Stuyvesant, respectively, are owned and run by Macosa’s owners; Malatesta opened three months ago on Tompkins Street in central Bed-Stuy and offers traditional Italian fare with contemporary touches as well as an expansive wine list filled with regional options; pasta is made on-site for patrons to watch the process take place in an open kitchen setting.
3. I Sodi
I Sodi stands out among West Village Italian restaurants as being particularly thoughtful, thanks to Rita Sodi of Tuscany native status. This ristorante offers a cozy dining space that feels more like your grandmother’s dining room than an urban club, featuring minimal decor with just enough handblown glass and chic leather furniture to add some class; plus, their menu boasts everything from risotto and branzino dishes through to I Sodi’s namesake dish: lasagna!
Sodi created her space as an extension of her kitchen table, featuring dishes inspired by country-Tuscan cuisine influenced by her mother’s recipes and simple, authentic ingredients sourced directly from Italy. This philosophy makes for an exquisite menu; highlight dishes include lasagna, cacio e pepe pasta, and special oxtail pasta, while an extensive wine list dedicated to Italy serves as the ideal complement.
I Sodi offers an impressive variety of meat dishes, such as roasted chicken and lamb shoulder. However, their most memorable entree is undoubtedly rabbit porchetta, with its bacon-wrapped loin, served in a sweet wine, rosemary and garlic sauce that complements its lean and almost austere nature – an exquisite preparation that showcases how flexible Italian cuisine indeed can be.
I Sodi is an off-the-beaten-path gem, not only in its location but because its reputation rests solely on word-of-mouth recommendations from regulars. Though very busy and with long wait times, this Italian restaurant stands out among New York City as a top contender for Tuscan cuisine. It should not be missed!
Pastai is an intimate eatery that boasts classic Italian fare with fresh ingredients from local farmers, offering guests an unforgettable dining experience. Their extensive food menu features everything from pasta and pizza dishes to seafood specialties and delectable appetizers and sweets – they even boast their wine list!
West Chelsea Italian cuisine spot Trattoria di South Italian Country Cooking draws inspiration from a family tradition of Southern Italian countryside cuisine, offering authentic pasta dishes and bar drinks as part of its culinary heritage. Since 1991, this cozy eatery has been offering classics and unique flavors for guests of West Chelsea.
This iconic Italian spot offers a distinctive dining room featuring a fantastic mural depicting the picturesque cliffs in Sicily. Family-friendly and casually elegant, its menu boasts pasta dishes and pizzas featuring various sauces – making this must-visit spot a must!
At Caesar’s Forum Shops, this Italian restaurant serves delicious cuisine in an atmosphere reminiscent of Europe. The Trevi is known for their delightful ambiance that conjures memories of charming cafes in Europe and their delicious classic Italian dishes, such as Veal Marsala or Chicken Marsala, as well as pasta dishes, bruschetta, and wine selections. They also feature happy hour drinks or gelato served at their walk-up bar for added enjoyment during their dining experience. Enjoy relaxing meals here with friends or the whole family – The Trevi is sure not disappoint.
Mulberry Street north of Canal, which has become synonymous with New York’s Italian American restaurants–filled with tourists twirling spaghetti onto their forks–is not the only area with great Italian eateries; other neighborhoods, such as Manhattan’s Upper West Side, offer fantastic alternatives.
Maialino Italian Restaurant at Gramercy Park Hotel offers modern Italian fare with a unique flair, drawing inspiration from traditional neighborhood eateries using fresh local ingredients. Their menu boasts classics like Paccheri all’Amatriciana and Bronzino Alla Griglia.
While the food is delicious, the true star here is the drinks. The bartenders are friendly, and cocktails are expertly executed; two top picks include martinis with white clam juice and vodka or the gin fizz.
Mario Carbone and Rich Torrisi’s high-end Italian-American restaurant is among the city’s most beloved. Its retro-glam interior evokes mid-20th-century Italian-American eateries, and the dining room often hosts fashionable patrons. Reservations may be challenging to secure; plan! Among their menu offerings are carpaccio Piemontese, scampi alla scampi, Caesar salad alla ZZ, and lemon cheesecake, among many other delicious specialties.
Frank Sinatra frequented this family-owned West Side restaurant, as did celebrities. It’s known for authentic Neapolitan fare like veal chop Siciliano, chicken contadina, and stuffed calamari; its bakery offers specialties like rainbow cookies and mozzarella sticks! Additionally, this family has launched their line of pasta sauces available online or in nationwide stores.