GUIDE: New York

Cozy 'hood Spots

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    Antonucci Café

    170 E. 81st St.

    Upper East Side

    Cuisine: Italian

    $$$

    On an impossibly picturesque street on the UES sits Antonucci Café, a gem that wouldn't be out of place on the streets of Milan. Eclectic artwork graces the walls while faucet handles come straight from Italy. White jacketed waiters serve up classically simple Italian fare featuring homemade pastas. If the outdoor dining gods allow it, snag a street-side table and drink it all in. READ REVIEW

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    Capizzi

    547 Ninth Ave.

    Hell's Kitchen

    Cuisine: Pizza

    $$

    Born and raised in Brooklyn, Capizzi’s warm and friendly owner Joe Calcagno knows a thing or two about pizza. His father and grandfather were also pizza makers, and the fresh—and only fresh—ingredients put Capizzi in a league of its own, even in a pizza-obsessed city like New York. The appetizer menu offers a small selection of simple salads made with fresh, unadulterated ingredients that won’t fill you up before the main event. READ REVIEW

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    Celeste

    502 Amsterdam Ave.

    Upper West Side

    Cuisine: Italian

    $$

    Celeste not only performs the difficult trick of making parsley taste good but also renders it pretty on the plate. Same with pastas, pizzas, salads and a licorice-and-mint gelato—all perfect, all inexpensive. The staff is just as agreeable, from the guy spinning the pizza dough to the waiter who slams the bill on your table with the words “No rush,” more a command than an option. READ REVIEW

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    'Cesca

    164 W. 75th St.

    Upper West Side

    Cuisine: Italian

    $$

    Don’t come to ‘Cesca’s Sunday brunch expecting an Italian affair. After all, Italians don’t do brunch. Not so at ‘Cesca. READ REVIEW

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    Clinton St. Baking Co. & Restaurant

    4 Clinton St.

    Lower East Side

    Cuisine: American, Bakery

    $$

    Japanese tourists simply adore this hot spot, so much that Clinton Street Baking Company now has an outpost in Tokyo. But if Japanese cuisine skews austere, Clinton Street’s goes the opposite way: indulgent, inviting, and luscious. READ REVIEW

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    Coco & Cru

    643 Broadway

    NoHo

    $$

    On this sunny corner of Broadway and Bleecker, Coco & Cru is bringing Australian café culture to Manhattanites. READ REVIEW

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    Convivium Osteria

    68 Fifth Ave.

    Park Slope

    Cuisine: Italian

    $$$

    Husband and wife team and chef-owners Carlo and Michelle Pulixi opened Convivium in 2000 on what was then a desolate stretch of Park Slope just off the bustling Flatbush Avenue. Along with the neighborhood, the restaurant has continued to blossom and it's now easily one of Brooklyn’s most under the radar, wonderful dining experiences. READ REVIEW

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    Epistrophy

    200 Mott St.

    Nolita

    $$

    This eminently comfortable Mott Street space, which transforms into an Italian wine bar when the sun sets—and a music venue on Sunday evenings—seems like it’s designed specifically for lounging READ REVIEW

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    Fonda

    40 Avenue B

    East Village

    Cuisine: Mexican

    $$

    While it's never been easy to find great Mexican food in New York, Mexico City–born, Paris-trained chef Roberto Santibañez of Fonda works it out. READ REVIEW

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    Gente Ristorante Italiano

    153 E. 45th St.

    Midtown East

    Cuisine: Italian

    $$$

    Great Italian food—from a menu that seems to go on forever—is hiding in plain sight, just around the corner from Grand Central. READ REVIEW


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