All Reader Reviews of...
21 E. 7th St., New York, NY, 10003
nr. Third Ave.
Charm of the Neighborhood
By bkeats on 8/21/2015
I am so shocked by the reviews below (but they are from a few years ago)! I went to Porsena last week for dinner and it was fantastic. Staff was incredibly friendly and offered great selections of the menu. Pasta is made fresh and the rose was delightful. This is a great neighborhood spot for good eats and atmosphere!
i love this place!!
By Eknowsfood on 2/9/2011
Porsena is awesome. its a true food gem. sara jenkins deserves all the hype surrounding her, she can really cook! the best part of Porsena is that its a perfect neighborhood fit. its a great place you could go to 3x a week and always order something different and love every dish. service is super friendly, awesome beer and wine list, perfect prices (especially for the quality and the chef status) im already addicted to this place and its a month old.
A great Spot
By aromang on 6/16/2011
I had dinner there last night with 9 other people. The meal was a prix fix because of our size. But it was outstanding. Everything we ate was worth every calorie - and there was plenty of it as well. The people were so nice to us and the night was a 10. I would recommend it to anyone.
Finally a new restaurant lives up to the hype!
By HonestVoice on 1/3/2011
Add Porsena to the list of authentic italian restaurants in the east village you must visit. I have lived in the neighborhood for over a decade and this new addition rivals others that have been around for years. From the bean salad, cheese bruschetta and mussels to the entrees of spicy pork ragu, chicken and lasagna, it all was outstanding. This place truly deserves the accolades it has received so far.
By Medusa100 on 6/3/2011
We went last night and had a delicious supper - I'm really not sure what the above negative reviews are about. Started off with salads - a fantastic seasonal salad of steamed local asparagus with fabulous, silky ramps (spring onions) and a lovely meyer lemon dressing finished with something creamy - creme fraiche perhaps? Just yummy! Also a fantastic fresh fennel, green beans, celery and roasted almond salad - all different kinds of crunchiness - very snappy and spring-like and a total contrast to the silky asparagus-ramp number. Some wonderful crostini as well - my only caveat would be that I wasn't expecting the mozzarella on the mozzarella & bottarga crostini to be melted - but then again, I didn't ask & the taste combination was fantastic! And finally, the pastas which were superb! We had the spicy lamb & mustard greens pasta - and yes it is rich - which may be the "oiliness" some of the previous reviewers referred to distastefully - there is olive oil and some oil from the sausage, but it is part of the sauce clearly, it slicks the pasta and adds to the textural contrast, particularly with the interior of the pasta being ridged, rather than the exterior. Just wonderful. And a very nice selection of wines by the glass. Plus they were very sweet to our five year old! All in all, a very pleasant dining experience - I am glad we weren't offput by the negative reviews, as we really enjoyed ourselves and will be back!
great neighborhood spot
By stefnyc1 on 11/22/2011
great food, reasonably priced, low-key atmosphere. if you're looking for cozy and comfortable, this is the place.
By AmeliaLM on 5/24/2012
I will begin this review by stating that the owner of the restaurant was so rude we did not stay for dinner-- I cannot speak to the quality of the food. I didn't make a reservation because the NYMAG site had it listed under "accepted/not necessary," but when we got to the restaurant (around 7:30), we were told it would be 2 hours to accommodate a table for two. The owner suggested we sit at the bar. The bar just wasn't what we were looking for -- we said the place looked great, we would make a reservation next time, couldn't wait to try it, we would come back another day. After making the pushiest, most aggressive sell to try to get us to sit at the bar, the restaurant owner returned my extremely polite refusal with a curt, "FINE. Look around, not our loss." I was floored. The food may or may not be fabulous-- but this place is in need of a serious personnel overhaul. Even if he's the owner, his front-of-house skills are atrocious. My first five minutes in this restaurant were SO unpleasant, I will not be going back to try again.
By jweiss on 11/10/2011
crashing disappointment, in fact, after this NY Mag review. did i order....the wrong thing? pasta al ragu. it was generic, bland, underseasoned, flat. especially after raised expectations. i ate at the bar: the hostess was fine, but no one seemed to care if i was enjoying my meal. which of course i really wasnt.
worst pasta we ever got in NYC - who's reviewing the Italian restaurants on NYMag lately??!
By IlConformista on 3/16/2011
Our dining expeirence was a total bust: I went with an Italian (from Italy) group of friends, and we all got different pastas, and they were all mediocre to terrible (my spaghetti pomodoro in particular, and how can you not be able to cook those?!?). Menu is boring, really nothing interesting on it (but also not authentic in its simplicity). Also: terrible decor, and under-staffed restaurant
Poorly executed food; We left disappointed (and we know Italian food from living there)
By knowsherstuff on 1/6/2011
I was so looking forward to the baked lasagna I had seen be delivered to a neighboring table, my heart sank when I got my own portion, totally overdone. The top layer was completely dark brown and burned, eliminating a third of my dish of the wide and shallow portion. Inside the pasta was mushy and too-soft, and the dry-as-a-bone ragu overwhelmed by pasty bechamel. Lamb sausage annelloni had good flavor but too greasy and too al dente. Service was mediocre; we were forgotten forever, then handed dessert menus before we'd received entree. The short rib was tender but the jus was too salty, with nothing redeeming about it. Nor did the octopus appetizer work--particularly off-putting was the fishy, warm orange slice and undercooked chickpeas. The server tried to be apologetic but not before blaming us for not preferring "crispy lasagna." I heartily enjoy a good crispy top on lasagna, as I am sure my neighbor did hers. But if the kitchen can't tell the difference between burned and crispy, this place does NOT deserve the accolades it's received.
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