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



Cuisine: Italian

Cititour Review: Smart New Yorkers know that dinner isn't always the best time to hit a popular restaurant. For example, lines out of the door are a regular evening occurrence at Celeste -- a doubly spectacular feat for a cash-only eatery. So try brunch. Not only is it a more civilized affair but most of this Upper West Side trattoria's menu is available. Maybe that's why a recent snowy Sunday found us sharing the room with actor Stanley Tucci and his family. No matter when you go, begin with a glorious salad of thinly shaved artichoke in a luscious lemony dressing (perfect for sopping up with the house's excellent bread). Brick oven pizzas are quite tasty, if a bit doughy. If you can't decide on a topping, head for the quatre stagioni; each quarter is different: plain, proscuitto, artichokes and wild mushrooms. Pasta lovers will drool over perfectly cooked spaghetti with herbs and garlic and accented by scrumptious baby clams in the shell. (We hear both the gnocchi and the tagliatelle with shrimp and cabbage are also to-die-for.) Desserts are definitely worth the calories. Homemade tiramisu dotted with chocolate bits and napped in an espresso sauce is truly fabulous, while limoncello tartuffo -- a ball of intensely lemony ice cream coated in lemon zest and powdered sugar -- is both original and delicious. Brava Celeste!
Review By: Brian Scott Lipton

Neighborhood: West 80s

502 Amsterdam Ave. (at 84th St.)
New York, NY