It includes red sauce restaurants, excellent restaurants and places to eat pizza and pasta on weekdays. Outside of Italy, New York is one of the best places in the world to eat Italian food. So yes, this list could have been much longer than 20 restaurants. It could also have included places that specialize in pizza.
But that's a completely different list, so you don't need to start tweeting about Lucali to us. For the most part, these are the places you go to for a special occasion. Or maybe you just have some extra money handy and want to sit in a bar on Wednesday and eat delicious pasta. Whatever the situation, if you want the best of the Italian cuisine that this city has to offer, check out this list.
The problem with compiling a list of the best Italian restaurants in New York is that there may be more of them here than in Italy. That reduces the number of establishments that serve what is arguably New York's favorite food to, oh, a few thousand or so. It's impossible to draw up a list of the best Italian restaurants in New York without Mario Batali's establishments popping up everywhere like daffodils in spring. What follows are the trattorie, the osterie, the enoteche and the Ristorante which, by virtue of the menu or technique, the atmosphere or the energy, are the best Italian restaurants in New York.
There's no seating at this small takeout spot on the border of Windsor Terrace, but that doesn't mean Joe Brancaccio doesn't prepare some of Brooklyn's best Italian dishes. The new space at the bottom of the Redbury Hotel is almost as charming as the old one and, with its subdued lighting and terrazzo floors, is the ideal spot for an Italian date night. This place manages to stand out among the thousands of Italian restaurants in New York by consistently preparing a simple and delicious meal. This place still serves some of the best spaghettini alle vongole in New York City, and other worthwhile staples, such as cacio e pepe and suckling pig, are still on the menu.
Going to Gravesend to eat a Sicilian portion and an L%26B spumoni is a New York rite of passage, but it would be a mistake to consider this classic establishment as a simple slice shop. In a eulogy, the New York Times wrote that the restaurant's approach to Italian standards is “completely true to your memories and, at the same time, much better than you remember.” The space looks like a glamorous whitewashed warehouse, and their modern Italian food is always perfectly executed.