1 Fifth Ave., New York, NY, 10011
at 8th St.
By dianno6 on 2/26/2008
This is a nice place with a cool atmosphere. The service was efficient and the salumi and olives were excellent. However, the pizza was flat out horrible. The crust is very thin and tastes like a saltine cracker. The sauce was equally devoid of flavor. The peppers I had on mine were overcooked and the mushrooms had a highly concentrated mushroom flavor that was not pleasant. I would not want my name attached to this stuff. I also tried the sausage and kale rigatoni and was not impressed. It looked and tasted like it was made by a Rachel Ray viewer. Now I'm all for simple food preparation but when the whole is not greater than the sum of it's parts, you don't get a great dish. OK so the prices are very reasonable, but it is clearly just a way to get you in the door to sell you wine and spirits. Not that there's anything wrong with that. I would recommend that if you visit Otto, order up salumi, olives and cheese with some wine or beer and you will probably be very happy. Skip the pizza though.
By EastSideStory on 1/16/2008
Casual perfection. OTTO accomodated and pampered our party, which had grown to 5 at the last minute. From the delicious - and strong! - aperitivi at the bar, to the pitchers of bellinis (as good as I drank in Italy), to the olive oil gelato at the end, the meal was perfection. The food was outstanding: we started with the largest cheese, olive and salumi platters; the cheeses were especially delicious, served with plates of honey, figs, and preserved cherries. We then each had a pasta. I can only speak for mine, the spaghetti carbonara, but it was perfection! Perhaps the best part? All five of us had cocktails, the appetizers, pastas, gelato, and two bottles of wine. The grand total . . . $300. You'd be hard-pressed to find more bang for your buck - or more relaxed fun - in New York.
By JeanneB on 9/25/2007
We selected a combination of chevre and cow cheese, a salade, an order of figs, the pasta special, a black and white dolce, the gingerbread/pear dolce, and the olive oil gelato. THe food was excellent. The pasta was pefect and well balanced with the pancetta and ricotta. THe olive oil gelato was very good but we devoured the black and white gelato first. The restaurant offers a nice selction of wine. A huge disappointment was the music. I t was obnoxiously loud. We asked if they could turn it down and JEffrey our waiter didn't answer. Was this cause he was hard of hearing or he didn't care what we said? Jeffrey our waiter rolled his eyes as I asked for help selecting three cheeses since I know nothing about tomma. Instead , I googled italian cheeses and made my selections based on my web searches. Food was great. Servie was awful and the music was LOUD!!!
By aquasun25 on 8/20/2007
the entrees were not particularly well made - the pasta sauce was not well prepared. I had penne putanesca and it has too many onions, limited olives and anchovies. we also ordered a pizza and it was poorly put together. the best part of the meal were the anitpasta dishes.
By andrevs on 4/8/2007
Overall our Sat night dinner experience was pretty good: we were seated shortly after arriving on time for our reservation, the food was quite good (especially given the reasonable pricing) and the service was ok for such a busy place. Despite the good food/service experience no one in our party of 6 will return because of the noise. Noise is an understatement for the volume level. I would put the decibel level between the Killers concert at MSG last fall and an Indy or Formula 1 car race. The restaurant would be acceptably loud on a crowded night but on top of the crowd they insist on blaring odd dinner music (Black Eyed Peas?). There are speakers everywhere & when we asked the waiter if the speaker directly over our table could be turned down he explained somewhat apologetically that "they like it loud" and nothing was done. We had a laugh with the couple at the table next to us who like us were amazed that anyone could deem the noise level acceptable. Maybe they keep things loud to discourage lingering?
By alg on 12/5/2005
I was here last week at nearly 6 PM on a Thursday night. The place was nearly empty, yet my pregnant friend and I were given a hard time asking to sit at a table before our third party arrived. This was how the evening began. The pasta was undercooked, not quite the al dente it was supposed to be. We would have shared this with our waiter but we didn't see him until well into the meal. The reason we will never come back, is because while we were finishing our bottle of wine, the manager attempted to bribe us to leave our table with an after dinner drink. We had wine in our glasses, a friend who was clearly not going to be drinking, and the night was still young. Tacky, rude, and ridiculous...and for mediocre pizza and pasta.
By ywwan on 11/5/2005
I hang out at Otto all the time, it is my neighbourhood wine bar. And the wine selection is fantastic, it stays open late and always has a good crowd. BUT... the pizza is frankly a big let down. Its not bad but I suppose that Babbo and Lupa are such extraordinary experiences that its hard to associate the very ordinary pizza with Mario Batali. The crust is thin and tasteless and is not crisp enough to retain its freshness more than 10 minutes after its left the oven. But not to despair, there are many other options on the menu. Between the excellent selection of appetizers, the wonderful cheeses and the excellent pasta, I am well satisfied. After all, its all about the wine and the cheese...
By ctiger14 on 10/24/2005
I ate here recently and thoroughly enjoyed my experience. This was a Saturday night so I expected to wait for a table, which we did, but the wait staff in the bar area was great in their knowledge and service. The wines that were suggested to us were excellent. Once seated, the service continued to be great both from our server and from the Wine Director, Peter, who doted on our party all night. Everyone at our table enjoyed our food and the thin crust pizza with a wide range of Italian toppings was perfect. Excellent Italian food and wine!
By 1jess1 on 7/18/2005
I went here with one other person on a Sat. night but would go back in a flash with a big group. Restaurant is very nice and cool inside. Pizza, pasta, salad and sides were all good - I thought pizza and pasta were very good while salad was just ok. Gelato was excellent. Service was excellent. Overall, a great value and I will definetely be back.
By ltif on 3/19/2005
They serve real Italian food. The pizza is thin and with the proper amount of toppings. They offer a wide selection of entrees and pizzas. The decor is really nice. The prices are extremely reasonable given the quality of food and the type of restaurant. The wait is often long but it's worth it. We are from Italy and it's one of our favorite places in the city.