There’s something about walking into a restaurant and eliciting genuine smiles and personal greetings from all of the servers and managers. In the West Village, M and I are lucky to feel that way quite often. There are many small restaurants we frequent (some as often as one a week on average) where we are warmly greeted by name and quickly seated. Our orders are remembered, our silly nuances and preferences accommodated without a questioning look or NYC eye-roll. Many people cite NYC as being an anonymous city. A city that moves too fast, leaving no time for the human experience on the whole, a city where people are busy pushing by you and don’t stop to talk to you. Da Andrea is one of the handful of places in the city that really ‘slows’ down for us, despite the restaurants incredible popularity.
Formerly of Hudson Street, Da Andrea offers homemade pastas, delicious seafood, fantastic meats and everything else in between for absolutely incredible prices. Nothing off the regular menu is above $20 and the fish specials are the only thing which exceed that price point (usually around $23 for a tuna or other premium fish). It’s a perfect place to go with a big group (the back area is usually reserved for larger parties) and also a great place to go “just the two of you”. A small amount of outdoor eating allows you to enjoy West 13th’s quiet pace while the windows to the restaurant also open in the warmer weather for an enjoyable breeze. I could write a post on every entrée, a love poem about my feelings for this treasure, but instead I’ll make it easier for all of us….
- Prosciutto plate: freshly baked and doughy small rolls with mouth watering prosciutto. Sprinkle a little of the fresh parmesan on top, you’ll thank me later.
- Grilled calamari or grilled octopus, both are delicious, flavorful and fantastic starts to a meal here. You can’t go wrong with any appetizers, but these flavors just don’t fail to impress.
- Fresh pastas, all delicious in their own right but their meat ragus/sauces are truly rich, warm, deep and boldly Italian
- Zuppa di Pesce: this is my go to order. You’ll rarely find me ordering anything else. Reminiscent of a cioppino, all of the seafood (calamari, mussels, fish, shrimp and other treasures) is cooked in a zesty and delicious tomato broth and I absolutely savor every bite. Don’t forget to let the grilled breadsticks sop up the broth and enjoy them mid-way through…(Yes, I take this dish seriously….)
(source: village voice)
- Lamb: although I am not a huge lamb person myself, having tried this I can attest to its epic size and taste. It is truly an amazing piece of meat.
Enjoy the generous portions, the great service and everything else about Da Andrea. Just don’t take my table.
( bet 5 th Avenue & 6 th Avenue)
35 West 13 Street, New York, NY 10011