Mon, 5pm-11pm; Tue-Thu, noon-11pm; Fri-Sat, noon-11:30pm; Sun, noon-11pm
B, C at 72nd St.
61st St. to 81st St., Central Park West to West Side Hwy.
This Upper West Side eatery began as Café Buon Gusto in 1993, then was rechristened as Bello Giardino three years later to call attention to its patio. Struggling with what to choose from among the Northern Italian, Southern Italian, and Italian-American dishes? Take note: Executive chef and owner Nick Mormando impresses most with his signature ravioli. Pasta mounds stuffed with lobster meat are immersed in a brandy-rich cream sauce that’s further flavored by julienned radicchio and asparagus spears. (Whole shrimp on top are a tasteful afterthought.) But other dishes, such as the lackluster eggplant parmigiana, are mixed at best. Popular with visitors to Lincoln Center, Beacon Theater, and Central Park, this place knows that the best thing its got going for it isn’t the food; it’s the atmospherics. The outdoor seating is canopied by fruit-bearing grapevines sure to add an air of romance whatever your meal.Recommended Dishes
Ravioli Giardino, $17.95