Great For Those On A Budget: Otto Enoteca and Pizzeria

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Otto, Otto, Otto. Where do I begin…

At Otto, one of Mario Batali’s restaurants, you will have the most delightful and affordable dining experience providing that you know what to order. It’s not a straight across the board good restaurant sadly, but for the prices there are some wonderful things that come out of the kitchen.

Let me start with the gelatos first, simply because that’s what I look most forward to when I go there

Here we go!

Olive oil: Lots of people that I have dined with find this to be absolutely heavenly, to me it’s not bad, but I wouldn’t die over it. It’s creamy gelato that leaves a lingering olive oil taste over your tongue as it melts.

Salty Caramel: Just average, I wish it tasted more caramel-y versus burnt caramel-y

Crème Fraiche: Reminiscent of sour cream and very light

Pistachio: Wonderful in flavor (though it still can’t compare to the gelato I had in Italy, but for America it was very good)

Guinness: Exactly as it sounds, so only order if you love Guinness

Coconut sorbet: silky and beautiful in flavor, next time I’m getting this again

Tangerine sorbet: Absolutely delicious, it’s as if it were the freshest tangerine I have ever eaten

Meyer lemon sorbet: I wish it were more lemony and a touch sweeter, it’s as if it weren’t sure as to what direction to go in and kind of reminded me of dishwashing soap

Canteloupe sorbet: Ohmigosh, I had this one probably a year ago and still remember it

(On a side note: If you ever see bacon ice cream being listed on the menu at Jack’s Luxury Oyster Bar, go that night. It is one of the most fantastic things one can taste if they never have before)

Their sundaes are delightful as well, but I must admit that I’ve never tasted any of their baked goods because I’ve been so focused on trying all of their gelatos. Beware if you want to get some to go though. It’s $12 a pint!

I guess we have to talk about the food right? First off, don’t get the pastas, after all, it’s not homemade so don’t expect anything to “wow” you. It reminds me of pastas that I make at home out of the box.  I was not impressed. Stick with the pizzas. They are nice, thin and crispy. The margherita is so basic, but my taste buds loved it. The clam was also very nice too, but I wish they took the clams out of the shells rather than just plop everything whole straight on to the pie. Stay away from the anchovy pizza. For someone who loves anchovies (Me!), this was bland and a disappointment. There’s a lot on their menu that really is just average, but when you go, make sure to try the brussel sprouts which are nice and savory, and if you are there on a Monday, give their eggplant bruschetta a whirl. Oh! One last thing, while I did enjoy the honey accompaniment with the cheese plate, the cheese plate was kind of pathetic size wise. Not worth it!

Otto also has a lovely wine selection, and although I’m not a  huge wine drinker when I am elsewhere I know I will be happy with their offerings. Frightened by the extensive wine menu? Simply ask your server who will suggest something very good and budget friendly.

During one excursion we ordered two sides, bruschetta, a pizza, three plates of pasta, two desserts and a bottle of extremely good wine and our bill was $113, without tip. And we had leftovers to take home! Suh-weet!

6.5 out of 10

-Joyce Huang

1 5th Ave, New York NY10003
Otto Enoteca & Pizzeria on Urbanspoon

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