665 Amsterdam Ave., New York, NY, 10025
nr. 92nd St.
By 2times2 on 9/18/2011
I have lived two blocks away from Gennaro's since it opened. I have eaten there probably 50 times. But over the last couple of years I inevitably walk out thinking that the food was just OK for the money but the overall experience was disappointing. They don't take reservations and they don't have an organized way to track who is waiting. Last time I was there as a couple they seated two couples that arrived after us before they seated my wife and me. When I complained, the maitre d' smiled at me and asked me whether I wanted to eat dinner there or leave. Should have left then. The tables are too small and too close together, it is too noisy, there are lots of big parties and there is no soul left in the place. Many neighbors who were Gennaro regulars share my feelings. It has gone from the go-to place to the never-go place. It's a pity since there are so few good eats in the 90s on the UWS.
By stephanieT on 12/28/2012
The food at Gennaro was passable. The polenta was extremely watery. The texture was liquidy and had no flavor. For main courses, my pork chop was the only noteworthy item. Everything else, pasta and veal, were nothing to write home about. The restaurant was also extremely warm and uncomfortable. The service felt rushed and all over the place. When we were leaving, someone clearing the table dropped what I thought was a water glass on the ground in front of me. It shattered and splashed all over my leather boots. He apologized and I went on my way. When I stepped outside I noticed that it wasn't water but was actually wax. I went back in to discuss the matter with the manager and he made me feel uncomfortable and like I was out of line asking them to cover the cleaning costs. The next week I picked up the boots from a shoe repair place and they looked horrible; scraped up and dirty looking. Although it was an accident, I was upset that my boots were ruined through no fault of my own. I went back with my receipt and the manager agreed to cover the cleaning cost of $35, but my boots were still a mess! His comment to me was " You need to find happiness in more than just a pair of boots." Extremely condescending. He did not offer to remedy the situation. Unfortunately, the boots are ruined and the restaurant should have taken responsibility. I'm frustrated and annoyed and will never go back again.
By centralpark on 4/11/2003
The food is tasty, but be careful of the seafood platter special. They charge an arm and a leg for it, but don't tell you how much it is until you get the bill! The desserts aren't very good, but the rest is great.
By kentola on 9/6/2010
i have lived next to gennaro for three years and have wondered why i never go. now i know. don't know if it's because i got takeout and they don't care what you find when you get home, but 6 undercooked ravioli and a shrimp salad with two shrimp and one canned artichoke heart is not exactly thrilling. had a glass of terrible pinot grigio also. and if you do go, make sure to bring cash. they don't take credit cards and don't tell you that till you get your bill. i asked someone why they don't have a sign out front saying they dont take cash and he said "we've been here 14 years. we don't have to". ok. go to acqua across the street. pleasant atmos. nice people. much better food.
By GourmetQueen on 2/19/2013
I had dinner with my friend. The food was just OK. Nothing was special. Next day, I noticed I left my umbrella there so called about 4:30PM to avoid their busy period. The guy who has thick accent answered the phone. He was very irritable and cold. I said "I left an umbrella last night" he just said "No. Umbrella!" and hanged up!? I called back right away and said "I think the phone was disconnected" but he said "What else you want? I have more important thing to do!" and hanged up again. Unbelievable !!!
By Knickerbocker on 6/14/2009
After reading the review on nymag.com, I expected this place to be much better than it was. I had the octopus and potato appetizer, which was on the menu, and it was pretty good, but my osso bucco with saffron risotto, a special, was not. It's hard to ruin a risotto, so it was edible, but one of the worse risottos I've had. The service was terrible. It took them half an hour to get my drink, although the waiter did apologize. Also, the specials are much more expensive that the dishes on the menu, so be careful. Finally, the decor was really quite bad. Thankfully, there are nicer and better places on the Upper West Side.
By alexnewyork on 4/13/2011
I've been to Gennaro off and on for 6 years, and I'm finding that the quality of the food and service is slowly, but noticeably, sliding. I have enjoyed so many apsects of this place in the past, but my experience this evening summarizes the overall trend. The focaccia in my bread basket crunched like a crouton. The waiter did not comment or apologize. My entree arrived before my glass of wine. Several bites remaining in my pasta bowl, and only 15 minutes later, I was approaced to see if I was finished. The quality and variety of Italian food in New York has exploded in the last few years. Gennaro, which was once a real discovery and solace, increasingly appears comfortably dependent on tired themes and flavors.
By dtulsa on 4/1/2003
a few items ok, some pretty good, a bunch are great. for the upper west side that equals a must dine at restaurant. always very crowded.
By colpo on 4/23/2003
Years ago, Gennaro's had just opened in its original, tiny incarnation. Gennaro was alone in the tinier kitchen, and the food had spark, particularly the signature lamb shank over fat-grain cous cous. We all felt like we'd stumbled onto something. Lately, the place has expanded, as has its rep. Italian food know-little's have taken to mobbing outside on the sidewalk. For what? The food is now very ordinary, and the menu selections are no longer even remotely unique or interesting. Plus, there's little incentive to shake things up b/c the loyal clientele will lap up whatever the kitchen kicks out. I'll give this one a return visit if I'm walking by and there's little wait.
By jcnrad on 11/17/2008
Went there with family in a large party of 8 and the staff did a great job honoring the reservation, but after that, things went downhill. Servers were definitely disappointed that we didn't want anything to drink (adults overseeing kids on a school night) but they moved on pretty quickly to more lucrative tables. Apps and salads came out in decent time - kale salad was long on kale and light on everything else, mushroom polenta was overloaded with cheese. Then . . . we waited almost 70 minutes for our dinners. Delivery orders kept going out . . . tables that sat after us finished desserts before we got our plates. And once it all arrived, everything was either under seasoned or overcooked - pure evidence that some things waited for everything else to catch up. Oddly enough, it was the penne that was freshest. Spaghetti was mushy and lacked definition and under seasoned. Steak was rubbery and had been re-heated. Goat was cold on the inside, burnt on the edges. Overall disappointing. Maybe it's a better experience when you're a party of two - they definitely couldn't deal with 8 in the middle of the dinner service.