All Reader Reviews of...
36 E. 4th St., New York, NY, 10003
Earnest and knowledgable staff isn't enough
By ajayorokmani on 10/31/2011
They have a dumbwaiter but not dumb waiters. The owner and the staff know exactly what's cooking in the basement of this tiny dining room and if you don't actually peek over the bar to see it arrive by way of pulley from the depths you are pleased by the presentation. The Italian food menu tries earnestly to be creative and it succeeds with dishes like the lemon tagliarini with sea scallops. The problem with Aroma is like so many other hardworking food joints: it's inconsistent. You should expect that from restaurants, no? Well, no, not if the restaurant is as small as Aroma. Such an establishment must make that a priority otherwise why pay their prices and sit in their after-thought of a hallway-dining room. Yes, there's a basement dining room but is that why you want to go out to eat and spend $100 a head. No, it isn't. Neither do you want to go out to eat squid tentacles that taste as cold and as rubbery as this year's Halloween mask. And the second and third time with the lemon tagliarini held not the charm of the first time: the chef seemed to forget about the thin but tasty, homemade pasta-rejuvenating broth. If that's the dish, why didn't it come out that way the next two times. Black (squid ink) linguine: nicely al dente homemade pasta but tasteless. Salads: absolutely uninteresting. Viand Diner do salads better. Grilled meat: Had to go back to the salt mines twice. But as I said, they put on a good academic show of it. They need to educate the chef in the dungeon.
Very romantic, with a fantastic wine list
By tess on 2/8/2007
A lovely, charming place. The food was delicious (loved the pasta Bolognese)...and what wonderful desserts (the chocolate almond cake is delectable, had me craving it for days after). The place itself has a great ambience...very relaxed, yet also festive, and the staff couldn't be warmer or more knowledgeable. But although it's perfect for an intimate event, I wouldn't recommend Aroma for a very large party, unless you care to use their private room downstairs.
My favorite Wine Bar
By Lrpug on 1/4/2007
My boyfriend and I are constantly exploring wine and this wine bar in our top 3 for Manhattan's downtown area. The service is delightful, the ambience calming and warm, not to mention Vito's wine list has got to be one of the most extensive in Italian varieties I've seen; all described in a completely unpretentious manner so that even the casual wine drinker can understand and find their perfect bottle! Whether you're at the bar or seated, it's truly a an experience.
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