This historic kitchen (the space has been around for close to a century) churns out the kind of no-frills, endlessly satisfying Italian food that for whatever reason appeals to ex-New Yorkers. The fact that the restaurant has been thoroughly revamped by April Bloomfield and Ken Friedman (The Spotted Pig, the Breslin) helps the cause, too. There’s nothing precious about the plates of pasta and generous orders of whole roasted chicken, which is probably why getting a table is close to impossible unless you’re willing to put in the time to wait. If dining alone, the bar is the ideal place to do so in peace. If you’re with a large group, inquire about their private room—the entrance is located on the other side of the kitchen’s warm chaos.

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