Daily, 11:45am-3:45pm and 5pm-10:30pm
4, 5, 6 at 86th St.
American Express, MasterCard, Visa
Dining at Giovanni Venti Cinque feels like hunkering down for a hearty winter's meal, even in the dog days of summer. The low-ceilinged interior is startlingly dark, and the faintest flicker of candlelight emanates from stained glass wall panels in shades of blue, green, and orange. The exceptional, robust Northern Italian dishes, however, are satisfying enough to forgive the dark, cheerless décor and maybe even the hefty price tag. Bold seasonings and intensely flavored sauces are the refrain in everything from cured meats to ravioli to quail. Pappardelle are served in a classic truffle- and oil-based sauce with strong white pepper and shredded parsley. Individual artichoke leaves are skillfully melded together by a thin layer of melted parmesan cheese and then topped with shavings and pistachio slivers. Fowl and game, storied provisions for the cold and the well-to-do, feature occasionally, a very fine cut of veal sauteed in brandy is accompanied by a just-sweet-enough berry sauce, and mini string beans enlivened by a sundried tomato paste and a petite ball of mashed potatoes.Recommended Dishes
Carciofini scottati, $15; pappardelle ai funghi selvatici, $24