Food & Drink

Antipasto Adventure: 16 Must-Try Spots in NYC

New York City is known for its diverse and delectable cuisine. From pizza to bagels, the city has it all. One dish that stands out above the rest is antipasto.

This Italian appetizer has become a staple in many New York City restaurants, and for good reason. Bursting with flavor, antipasto is the perfect way to start a meal and tantalize your taste buds.

With so many restaurants claiming to have the best antipasto in town, it can be difficult to know where to go. That's why we've done the research for you.

We've scoured the city to find the best places for antipasto, ranging from traditional Italian restaurants to trendy hotspots. Whether you're a seasoned antipasto connoisseur or you're trying it for the first time, our list has something for everyone.

But what makes a great antipasto? It all starts with high-quality ingredients. Fresh meats, cheeses, and vegetables are essential for creating a flavorful and satisfying dish. Presentation is also key.

A well-arranged antipasto platter can be as visually appealing as it is delicious. And of course, the taste must live up to the hype. A great antipasto should have a balance of salty and savory flavors, with each ingredient complementing the others.

So, without further ado, let's dive into our list of the best places for antipasto in New York City.

Get ready to indulge in some of the most mouthwatering appetizers the city has to offer.

1. Carmine's Italian Restaurant – Times Square

Carmine's Italian Restaurant - Times Square
200 W 44th St, New York, NY 10036 (Google Maps)

Carmine's Italian Restaurant – Times Square is a must-visit for those looking for delicious antipasto.

The portions are huge and perfect for sharing with friends and family. The atmosphere is homely, and the service is excellent.

The menu offers a variety of Italian classics, including pizza and pasta. Don't forget to try the Spidini al la Romano, a must-try appetizer.

If you're in the area, make sure to stop by Carmine's Italian Restaurant – Times Square.

2. Piccola Cucina Estiatorio

Piccola Cucina Estiatorio
75 Thompson St, New York, NY 10012 (Google Maps)

Piccola Cucina Estiatorio is a must-visit for anyone looking for authentic Italian cuisine. Their antipasto is simply amazing, with fresh and well-prepared ceviche and carpaccio.

The pasta dishes are equally impressive, especially the fusilli with langostine, burrata, and arugula. The wine list is also great, making it an ideal spot for a romantic date or a night out with friends.

The staff is friendly and knowledgeable, providing excellent recommendations without breaking the bank.

The only downside is the limited seating, so be sure to make a reservation in advance. All in all, Piccola Cucina Estiatorio is a top-notch restaurant that will leave you wanting more.

3. Tony's Di Napoli

Tony's Di Napoli
1081 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10065 (Google Maps)

Tony's Di Napoli is the perfect place for those who love Italian cuisine.

The restaurant offers a vibrant atmosphere and friendly staff, making it ideal for family-style dining. The antipasto is a must-try and the portions are big enough to share.

The house special, Mushroom and Truffle Ravioli, is a must-have. The restaurant is always packed, so reservations are recommended.

Prices are reasonable, and the food is worth every penny. If you're in the mood for some great Italian food, Tony's Di Napoli is the place to be.

4. Trattoria Pesce Pasta

Trattoria Pesce Pasta
262 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014 (Google Maps)

Trattoria Pesce Pasta is a cozy Italian restaurant that serves delicious antipasto. The atmosphere is warm and welcoming, and the service is attentive.

The menu offers a range of vegetarian options, as well as seafood and pasta dishes that are bursting with flavor.

The staff is knowledgeable and friendly, making for a pleasant dining experience. Prices are reasonable for the area, making it a great spot for a casual night out.

If you're looking for authentic Italian cuisine, Trattoria Pesce Pasta is definitely worth a visit.

5. Pepolino

Pepolino
281 W Broadway, New York, NY 10013 (Google Maps)

Pepolino is a cozy Italian restaurant that serves modern Tuscan dishes and Italian wines.

The atmosphere is warm and inviting, with friendly and knowledgeable service. The food is authentic and delicious, with daily pasta specials that are always amazing.

The tomato plate they serve with the bread is unlike anything else, and the mussels are a must-try.

Although there are limited vegetarian options and the prices are a bit high, it's still a great spot for antipasto. Make sure to book a reservation early as the restaurant is popular and fills up quickly.

6. Canaletto

Canaletto
208 E 60th St, New York, NY 10022 (Google Maps)

Canaletto is an authentic Italian restaurant that offers a nice selection of antipasto. They have a great cocktail and wine selection to complement the food.

The staff is friendly and attentive, making the dining experience pleasant. The restaurant has a warm and intimate ambiance, perfect for a romantic dinner or a quiet lunch.

The food is cooked to perfection and tastes delicious. The veal piccata and chicken parm are highly recommended.

The tiramisu is a must-try dessert. Canaletto is a great spot for Northern Italian fare and is loved by many regulars.

7. Avena

Avena
260 6th Ave, New York, NY 10014 (Google Maps)

Avena is a hidden gem for antipasto lovers. With its real representation of Italian cuisine, this restaurant will not disappoint.

The appetizers are great and the wine selection is impressive. The friendly staff and good quality of food will make you feel right at home.

The outdoor patio is perfect for people watching on a cool, hip downtown vibe. The bread basket and pumpkin soup are complimentary and a great start to your meal.

Avena is definitely a must-visit for anyone looking for an exceptional Italian dining experience.

8. Osteria Morini

Osteria Morini
218 Lafayette St, New York, NY 10012 (Google Maps)

If you're in the mood for Italian antipasto, Osteria Morini is worth checking out.

This restaurant offers Emilia-Romagna cuisine in a rustic setting, with a robust Italian wine list to complement your meal.

The charcuterie and cheese plates are a must-try, and the homemade pasta dishes are fresh and delicious. The service is attentive and the atmosphere is warm and inviting.

Whether you're looking for a romantic dinner or a night out with friends, Osteria Morini is a great choice for antipasto in the city.

9. IL Postino

Il Postino
133 E 61st St, New York, NY 10065 (Google Maps)

IL Postino is a must-visit for anyone looking for high-quality Italian antipasto.

The restaurant boasts a variety of authentic Italian dishes, including standouts like the octopus appetizer and white bean amuse bouche. The service is impeccable, and the atmosphere is elegant and refined.

While the prices are on the higher side, the quality of the food and service make it well worth it.

Whether you're looking for a romantic date night or a discrete business meeting, IL Postino is the perfect spot for an intimate and delicious meal.

10. Via Carota

Via Carota
51 Grove St, New York, NY 10014 (Google Maps)

Via Carota is a rustic Italian trattoria that serves traditional plates and apéritifs. The menu features a selection of vegetable-based dishes and antipasti, with only a few meat and fish options.

The portions are not too big, and the food is perfectly seasoned with high-quality ingredients.

The service is friendly, and the ambiance is cozy and calming. The restaurant is usually very packed, so it's recommended to make a reservation or arrive early to avoid long waits.

Despite the high demand, Via Carota is worth the wait for those seeking a delightful and authentic Italian dining experience.

11. Emilio's Ballato

Emilio's Ballato
55 E Houston St, New York, NY 10012 (Google Maps)

Emilio's Ballato is a classic Italian restaurant with an old-school vibe. The service is attentive and the atmosphere is cozy and inviting.

The food is exceptional, with standout dishes like meatballs and veal parm.

While it may be a bit pricey, the quality of the food and service make it worth it. The restaurant is a popular spot for celebrities and locals alike, so reservations are not accepted.

If you're looking for a memorable Italian meal, Emilio's Ballato is definitely worth a visit.

12. Trattoria Dell'Arte

Trattoria Dell'arte
900 7th Ave, New York, NY 10106 (Google Maps)

Trattoria Dell'Arte is a lively Tuscan trattoria that offers a bustling atmosphere and an antipasto bar.

The restaurant is decorated with Italian art and offers a variety of Italian dishes.

The food is impeccable, and the service is top-notch. The portions are large, so come hungry.

Highly recommended for anyone who wants to impress their date or loved one.

13. il Buco

Il Buco
47 Bond St, New York, NY 10012 (Google Maps)

Il Buco is an upscale Mediterranean restaurant known for its carefully sourced plates and rustic-chic ambiance.

The antipasto selection is a must-try, with options like salumi and octopus that are cooked to perfection. The menu changes daily, offering a unique dining experience every visit.

The knowledgeable and attentive staff make recommendations for the perfect wine pairing. The cozy atmosphere makes for a romantic and intimate dining experience.

Il Buco is a definite must-visit for anyone looking for authentic Mediterranean cuisine in a charming setting.

14. Malatesta Trattoria

Malatesta Trattoria
649 Washington St, New York, NY 10014 (Google Maps)

Malatesta Trattoria is a cozy Italian restaurant that serves up delicious antipasto.

The menu boasts a variety of simple and comforting pasta dishes, as well as an assortment of tasty bruschetta. The burrata is a must-try, and the wine list pairs perfectly with the food.

The staff are friendly and knowledgeable, making for a great dining experience.

While the restaurant can get loud inside, the outdoor terrace is perfect for a romantic summer dinner. Malatesta Trattoria is a hidden gem that is definitely worth checking out.

15. Pasta Eater

Pasta Eater
9 E 17th St, New York, NY 10003 (Google Maps)

Pasta Eater is a charming Italian restaurant that specializes in fresh, homemade pasta dishes. The restaurant is popular with singles and families alike.

The staff is friendly and attentive, and the menu is reasonably priced. The appetizers are plentiful, and the antipasto is particularly noteworthy.

The pasta dishes are all delicious, and the cheese wheel pasta is a must-try. The restaurant offers indoor and outdoor seating, and the interior is clean and well-maintained.

All in all, Pasta Eater is a great choice for anyone looking for authentic Italian cuisine in a cozy setting.

16. La Pizza & La Pasta

La Pizza & La Pasta
200 5th Ave, New York, NY 10010 (Google Maps)

La Pizza & La Pasta is a must-visit for anyone craving authentic Italian cuisine.

With an extensive menu of fresh antipasti, mouth-watering pizzas, and al dente pastas, this cozy restaurant offers a true taste of Italy.

The bustling atmosphere and friendly staff add to the overall experience.

Don't forget to try the Tiramisu, it's a real treat. Make sure to book in advance, as this place gets busy.