Mon-Sat, 11:30am-9:30pm; Sun, 11:30pm-9pm
B, D, F, M, N, Q, R at 34th St.-Herald Sq.; 1, 2, 3 at 34th St.-Penn Station; 1, 2, 3 at 34th St.-Penn Station
American Express, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Unless you take the express elevator from 35th and Broadway, it might be easier to find the bath towels than to find the restaurant tucked inside Macy’s. Stella 34 Trattoria is hidden in the rear of the sixth floor of “the World’s Largest Store,” just past the Starbucks and to the right of the bedding. The Italian trattoria takes the stark, bright decor of its homebase and softens it with just the right dose of panache, with a backlit wine bar, high-backed leather chairs, and a marble-tiled floor. Lest the Neapolitan menu—which features pizza made out of Caputo flour from Naples and San Marzano tomatoes from the foothills of Mount Vesuvius—make you forget what country you’re in, the walls are adorned with Robert Risko drawings, a hat tip to the old New York. Starters are divided into three sections—verdure, pesce, and carne—with standouts like the salty, fragrant Yukon potatoes rolled in rosemary and Pecorino-Romano cheese. The entrée options are more creative; choose from a handful of pastas, fish, meat, pizzas, or dishes made al forno in the wood-burning oven visible from most seats in the room. Vegetarian options are few, but the barbabietole salad, with roasted beets, lentils, and stracciatella, is sweet, tangy, and incredibly delicious—its only misstep are the unnecessary candied pistachios, an issue easily remedied with the push of a fork. The pizzas are good, too, and the margherita’s crust appropriately charred and slightly crunchy. Make sure you choose a seat facing the window; the sixth-floor views of the Empire State Building aren’t there for nothing, or you could spend your evening gazing at the selection of linens to the left of your companion’s ear.