Celebrating its 107th Year, Barbetta is the oldest restaurant in New York still owned by its founding family. Barbetta is also New York's oldest ... More
Celebrating its 107th Year, Barbetta is the oldest restaurant in New York still owned by its founding family. Barbetta is also New York's oldest Italian restaurant and the oldest restaurant in the Theater District. This three-fold distinction has earned it landmark status by the Locali Storici d'Italia. In a glittering interior decorated with 18th century Italian antiques Barbetta serves the cuisine of Piemonte, Italy's northwestern most region. In summer, its exuberantly verdant garden with century-old trees and scented with the blooms of wisteria, oleander, jasmine and gardenia make it a most sought-after site for al fresco dining.
A Tragedy On 46th Street
I witnessed a tragedy the other night. No, not the loss of a life. It was the loss of an institution . . . a bastion of class and cuisine. I refer to the quiet passing of the Grand Dame of West 46th Street: BARBETTA. The Garden was near empty on a beautiful evening in July. The once vibrant spirit was gone as evidenced by the absence of its ever resourceful maitre'd of many years as well as the persistent and ever hopeful yet very knowledgeable sommelier. They have moved on to other venues. Regulars are no longer regulars.
Sure, the menu was familiar as were the prices. But quality? Value? They were clearly on holiday. In a party of three, two of our plates were not served as ordered. Our first two wine selections were no longer available. It appears the venerable wine list has been cherry picked of its vertical gems. Mrs. . . ., if you have the opportunity to see this message, please get the help you need to salvage this gem of a restaurant. Restore the luster. Its in your hands. Unfortunately, until I hear Barbetta has been resuscitated, I can only pay respect to its memory as I pass it by on Restaurant Row.
Stepping into Barbetta,you know you are in for a special evening. It's as if you entered some where in magical Italy. You are greeted with true warmth, as you are seated you feel as though they read your mind. The wine selection is amazing and everything on the menu is to die for. It is an evening you will not forget.
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