Cititour: The New York Guide to Events, Restaurants, Music, and Nightlife



Cuisine: Italian


Cititour Review: Few people, other than actors, spend as much time in the Theater District as I do, but odds are you'll be catching a Broadway show this holiday season and looking for a good place to have dinner. One of the most popular spots I know is Cascina, a pleasing Italian restaurant that attracts diners from all over the Tri-state area (which makes reservations a really good idea). While some may prefer to sit in the lovely upstairs space (a popular private party spot), many like the downstairs back room where you are warmed by the fires of the brick oven which also cooks much of the restaurant's fine cuisine, including its signature pizzas. The restaurant offers a $24.50 pre-theater menu that will suit many taste buds and budgets, but you may want to sample the regular menu. (If so, a three-course dinner is more likely to run you in the $30-$40 price range, excluding beverages, tax and tip.) A hearty and filling starter for the meal -- easily shareable by two -- is a pair of grilled polenta squares topped with a mild gorgonzola sauce. Another great idea is to split one of the many homemade pastas on the menu, such as orechiette alla Contadina with sausage and roasted peppers or linguine al pesto. I'm particularly partial to the house's cannelloni, two crepe-like wrappers filled with ground veal, arugula and ricotta, and baked with just the right amount of tomato sauce and cheese. Mains run the gamut from simple fare like grilled chicken breast and shell steak to somewhat more elaborate creations like Milanese Farcita, a dish of chicken rolled and stuffed with spinach, mozzarella and prosciutto. Pork fanciers will likely be pleased with the generous sized pork chop which arrives in a beautifully made marsala sauce and accompanied by excellent roasted potatoes. If you manage to leave room for dessert, you won't be disappointed by a large square of tiramisu or a nicely conceived warm apple tart with an almondy-base. One final note: Cascina will be open on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, and will be serving special $45 prix-fixe menus to celebrate the holidays.
Review By: Brian Scott Lipton

Neighborhood: West 40s

647 Ninth Avenue
New York, NY
(212) 245-4422