“The music was loud and blaring dance music, the opposite of what a "romantic" atmosphere should be like.”
“Dessert was equally fabulous--ricotta cheesecake.”
“Service just perfect as were the wine choices.”
“The food was ridiculously good.”
“great variety of flavor and perfect wines to match each course.”
“Time after time, friends of mine have raved about Babbo, claiming it to be their favorite restaurant EVER.”
“want to go back next week because the menu is so extensive and there are so many things to try.”
“With it's many innovating and delicious dishes and a staff that is truly professional, knowlegable and yet friendly, Babbo is truly a dining experience that lives up to the hype.”
“The sommelier talks wines better than he recommends them, pushing an overpriced Merlot after I told him I dont like merlot: No, this one is special.”
“The only way to get a table in this restaurant is by cowering in the entrance smashed up against people eating next to you, enduring the cold drafts from the entrance door, constantly avoiding people passing by getting their coats and waiters running by”
Mario Batali's flagship hasn't lost its fastball; its vivid, ballsy take on Italian food continues to constantly change and impress.
The wine pairing tasting menu is to die for. They have been some of the best meals I have had in my entire life.
Batali's comments are insensitive and hurtful. I can't believe Batali is comparing bankers to Hitler and Stalin. Agree with the previous post that it is completely insensitive. Why can't he just stick to making food? I can only assume that if he is busy attending conferences and media events offering his political views he is definitely not paying attention to his businesses and the quality of his food. Given this, and the insensitivity he recently displayed in comparing bankers to Hitler, I will no longer eat at his restaurants and will encourage others to do the same.
Its a falling star. I have been several times and its the classic fall from grace. They used to do fantastic creative things and now its cram expensive fair down the throats of tourists. Food was ok at best and service was disappointing. I really don't appreciate asking the waiter for a wine in the $75-$100 range and being compelled to try a $175 wine in a tone that made me feel cheap in front of my date. So many great places in NYC, I suggest you wait for the 50% off coupon that will probably be out shortly.Save your money.
Boycott Mario Batali Restaurants.
Mario Batali's recent comment comparing bankers to Hitler and Stalin are downright disgusting and irresponsible (reference at bottom of review). While there are many views on bankers during these challenging times, his references to such dictators who executed many people for their religion and / or beliefs is hurtful and ignorant. I do not believe it is in this world's best interest to support him or his restaurants given his most recent comments.
google or search for the following article as a reference: "mario-batali-apologizes-for-comments-comparing-bankers-to-hitler-stalin"
Terrible Service. So/So Food.
After making a reservation one full month in advance, I really do not see what the hype is. We had the traditional tasting menu. Sommelier was helpful and helped us pick a good bottle. SERVICE WAS AWFUL! Imagine, the waiter would come and finally tell us what we ate after we had eaten it. I thought that for all the clamoring that this is fine italian cuisine, we would have gotten better service than this, I do not know if waiter was overwhelmed with his other tables, or what. They should have presented the food and had the waiter tell us the story with what was being served when the plate was introduced to us. At one point, we had already finished the plate, when the waiter who served came and said well what was on your plate was.... This is because your service is poor, my friend. Not very surprising.
Anyhow, dishes were ok at best, prefer to go to some whole in the wall italian place in East Village and get a better meal. the charred hen we had was over salted. Seriously, I will never go back.
NOT WORTH THE MONEY OR HIPE. I was very exhited when I finally was able to get a reservation for this very busy and popular restaurant. Was seated upon arrival an staff was very friendly and professional. The sommalier helped us pick out a really nice bottle of wine, but when the food arrived we were very dissapointed. My fish was very bland and swimming in a pool of bland sauce. The pasta course was simply just OK. Ordered the chocolate cake for dessert which was extremely tasteless. Could only really have 2 bites-- Just was not worth it!!!!! The background music starts to give you a migrane after a while unless you like headbasshing music while dining at a fancy restaurant... WOULD NOT RETURN!!!
Reservation line impenetrable. And inhospitable. I think I may have listened to an entire aria before the young lady came back on the phone after asking me to wait for a minute. The reviewers may rave, but the heart of this place is cold and dead. Waste of my time, and a wasted attitude.
REALLY BAD - RUDE STAFF, POOR SERVICE, BAD FOOD. we scrambled to get a ressie...i wish i never did. We eat out a lot, and expect good service, and good food...especially with all the hype. The staff was really lousy. They act like they do you a favor...place is too small, the food was not very good, apart from 1-2 pasta's. The staff was clueless, and did not seem like they wanted to help. We spent a lot of money on wine, and were treated like we were in the way...tying up a table. One dish was inedible - too salty. the tongue appetizer was bad -- too much vinegar, covering the taste...do not bother going...it is not all that!
Lovely Dining Experience.
We had been trying to get a reservation forever and could never even get through on the phone -- Until we learned the trick (which I will not share for fear of never being able to get a reservation again!). So, we finally went for dinner for my husband's birthday.
The service was excellent. We had dietary restrictions and the servers were not only very diligent in warning us of any problems/switching up ingredients, but I was impressed that they communicated among one another, so that a new server was already aware of our restrictions.
We were interested in a tasting menu (there was so much delicious looking food on the menu, we couldn't choose!) Our waiter recommended - rather than try any of the published tasting menus - that we do an a la carte tasting - in which we can choose any combination of dishes we like. This was an excellent idea. Unlike most tasting menus, the portions were actually very generous (yes, we were absolutely stuffed at the end of the evening).
My only complaint is that I think the pasta dishes were a little bit too salty -- still delicious - but could have done with a little less salt.
Addiional comment on the service -- we noted that we did not feel rushed at all. We were seated around 7:20 and remained in the restaurant until almost 10. For such a busy/in-demand restaurant, I think it's unusual for the staff to not try to push you out -- and I appreciated it.
Favorite dish of the evening -- Beet tartare (and I don't generally even like beets!!)
Added treat - we saw Mario Batalli himself dining at the front of the restaurant when we walked in.
Overall, wonderful, pleasant dining experience. I look forward to going back soon!
Best of Manhattan.
Babbo is among the best restaurants I've dined at. From the exquisite ambiance, to the attentive service and truly gourmet food, there is not a thing I would change about Babbo.
Upon walking in we were greeted by the maitre d who eagerly checked our coats at the door. Though we were about 20 mins early for our reservation we were escorted to our table as soon as we walked in. Nothing on the menu was ordinary: the meat selection offered rabbit, boar, venison, quail, duck, lamb and sea bass. Several sommeliers walked the floor and offered wine recommendations as we finalized our dinner selections.
We started off with the winter vegetable salad with goat's milk ricotta and pumpkin seed oil. The ricotta spread over the baguette slice was so creamy and delish! When the pumpkin ravioli arrived our waiter grated an amaretti cookie over the entire dish, which was the perfect compliment to the light sauce. The striped sea bass came with a chorizo vinaigrette and grated chorizo topped over the bass. My only regret was not being able tor try more of the mouth watering dishes!
I completely disagree with those that say the service was anything but exceptional. The wait staff was extremely professional and checked in with us enough to be helpful but not annoying.... they even treated us to a complimentary cookie assortment at the end of our meal.
Babbo is a MUST for anyone in Manhattan, I will definitely be back when I'm in the area again!
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