All Reader Reviews of...
1 Fifth Ave., New York, NY, 10011
at 8th St.
By coladin on 3/16/2005
Amazing pizza with creative toppings that were very fresh. We had four different faces check on us to see if everything was okay. The seafood appetizer for 21$ is a must as is their excellent Italian bread. Excellent, busy and a winner. The desserts are worth the trip, simply amazing...you must try the olive oil gelato!
Over-hyped, Long wait
By NYCGirl219 on 2/17/2005
Food was good, at best--service left a little to be desired. Waitress spoke down to me when explaining, at least 1 hr to get a table, exasperated service, forgot our wine. Not terribly expensive, but I could have had a better time somewhere else.
Better than you've heard.....
By streamwise on 2/7/2005
Given all the mixed reviews, my experience here was pretty good. I ate at the bar, and service was good. The bread was typical country italian (yes, its supposed to have a hard crust and holes) and the pasta was perfectly cooked (al dente, definitely not "undercooked"). I'm not the biggest fan of the pizza here, but everything else I've had (octopus, squid, various salads) has been good to excellent. And of course the gelato is ALWAYS amazing. The wine seems expensive at first, but then I realized that they're pouring 1/3 bottles (250 ml) rather than single glasses, so the markup over retail was about the same as most other places. [I've also had delivery from Otto's too....be aware that the pizza definitely does not fare well this way unless you reheat it in a pan to re-crisp it.]
By chadrs00 on 1/2/2005
I was recently visiting Manhattan from Richmond, VA. I try to come to the city between two and three times a month. I was staying with friends on the upper east side and they had recently eaten at Otto. I met a few friends who were in town, although we had to wait about an hour and a half, it was fantastic. It was just what we were looking for. The crowd was perfect. In the bar area, the stand-up tables, are a perfect accent, and make for a nice way to enjoy a few bottles of wine before our meal. Which is what we were looking for. We had the three for $10 cheese and it was supurb. The wine selection is amazing. When it was time to eat, the service is probably the best that I've ever had in the city. I believe the waiters name was Michael. My only recommendation would be maybe just a little more variety on the menu. All in all, I completely enjoyed my experience at Otto, and plan to attend the next time i'm in the city.
Prices are low 'cuz food is terrible!
By WomanChild25 on 10/18/2004
My friend and I ate here tonite, and were so disappointed! We shared arugula salad, spaghetti carbonara and the four-cheese pizza. Arugula was fresh and fragrant, but would do well with a bit of shaved parmigiana (which was not available). Both the pizza and pasta arrived cold. The carbonara sauce was sticky, did not have any discernible pancetta in it, and did not resemble anything close to carbonara. The portion was barely enough for one person, let alone family style. The pasta was partially uncooked. The cheeses and the sauce on the pizza were tasty, but the crust tasted like cardboard. Don't even think of ordering off the menu. We were served three slices of mediocre bread (more air holes than bread) with a hard dark crust (hard to chew) wrapped in PAPER only (no basket). And no butter or olive oil until we requested some. We were only given one packet of thin breadsticks; at least one each would have been nice. This was one of the least enjoyable meals I have ever had.
By cetek on 9/7/2004
Despite the fantastic wine list and fun wine bar, the restaurant just doesn't work. We heard blaring 80s rock music over a really bad sound system while the level of noise was already very high. Despite my expectations for the pizza, all four of our pizzas (they are small) were served together, thus some were cold and others barely warm. Pizza needs to be served and eaten as soon as it leaves the oven. Bread was served when we were seated - slightly stale, cold, with no olive oil for dipping and only two slices for our table. I would not go back here - far too much hype for an average to below average meal.
By emily1 on 6/12/2004
I am a big fan of Mario's restaurants (Casa Mona is incredible)...but was sorely disappointed by my visit to Otto. The charcuterie plate was great, but the service, when dining at the bar, was terrible. I was almost denied a glass of expensive white wine because the bartender felt it was the wrong choice with my pizza. C'mon, it's pizza. Anything goes.
By doghigh on 9/16/2003
I really have been looking forward to eating at Otto. I wasted my time. The decor was about what I would expect, lovely with a rustic feel. The wine list really is phenomenal. But from there it's downhill. The food was at best mediocre, not of the calibre one would expect based on Otto's pedigree. The service was possibly the worst I have yet to receive in this City...and that speaks volumes. The waiter was cold and uninterested. As he rambled the specials off he looked everywhere except us. He didn't follow up to see if we needed anything else until he slapped the check on the table at the end of the meal (despite following up with every other table in his section). His pompous attitude and aloofness made for an incredibly miserable dining experience. I say experience because ultimately that's what going out is about to me. If I can't have the whole package, good food, service and ambience, then why spend the money? I would never go back.
Otto equals Zero
By Gr8Chef2b on 8/7/2003
Nice wine menu, but the food was not what I would have expected from the Great Mario Batalli. Where's the flavor? Example: Pizza Napoletana ... the nicest part was the anchovies ... the sauce tasted like it was tomato paste from the can and was spread on like peanut butter ... where's the seasoning? The flavor? ... Joe's has better pizza and 1/12th the cost as well.
Very pricey, small portions
By Hipster on 8/4/2003
Some unique pizza toppings (clams, lardo), but the pizza is not that good (almost like how it's made in Rome, but better) and too small. Very pricey. Very good wine selection. Limited cheese selection. I enjoyed the decor/atmosphere (contemporary music, not too loud, college aged diners). But don't expect to fill your belly there.
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