6 at 51st St.; E, V at Lexington Ave.-53rd St.
American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
34th St. to 56th St., FDR Dr. to Fifth Ave.
It's easy to see why Nino's Positano attracts such a loyal clientele. Neighborhood regulars are treated like minor royalty and the Southern Italian fare is generous and consistently tasty. There's a small front room with a bar, but the real action is in back, where the dark-wood moldings and muted light from the wall sconces convey the heavy warmth of a great-aunt's drawing room. The strong suit here is seafood. If you're ready to splurge you can opt for a 4.5-pound lobster–you can choose your own from a tank near the bar–served fra diavolo with a heap of linguini. An equally tempting specialty is the blackened, whole roasted branzino, accompanied by a steaming mound of broccoli rabe and mint-roasted potatoes; the flesh, which is slightly sweet and pillowy, gets a delightful fillip of charred sourness from the grilled lemons. Moving from surf to turf, the kitchen offers a tender double-cut veal chop.Prix-Fixe
Three-course lunch, $24; three-course dinner, $35Recommended Dishes
Roasted beets, endive, and goat cheese salad, $8; whole roasted branzino, $29; double-cut veal chop, $39