Il Violino

4.4
1094 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Italian
Il Violino was established in 1993 by the Mariani family. They are from Villa Santa Maria, a little town in the heart of Italy (Abruzzo) known as La patria dei cuochi (chefs from this town have been executives at the Vatican, the White House, embassies and top restaurants and cruise lines around the world). Il Violino has been one of the original Lincoln Center Italian restaurants and, in these days, one of the few still in operation.
The chef Vincenzo Mariani, formerly the executive chef at Monsignore (one of the top restaurant in New York City in the 70’s and 80’s), leaded the kitchen with his international experience and created an original and innovative Italian menu.
In 2009 the owner, decided to write a new page. The restaurant has been renovated and transformed into a Trattoria: a warmer and cozier ambiance, one of those that you can easily find in any small town in Italy.
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Cuisines
Italian
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Hours of operation
LUNCH:
Tuesday - Friday: 11:00am - 4:00pm
DINNER:
Sunday : 4:00pm - 10:00pm
Monday to Thursday: 4:00pm - 10:30pm
Friday - Saturday: 4:00pm - 11:00pm
BRUNCH:
Saturday and Sunday 11:00am-4:00pm
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Phone number
(212) 873-2500
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Smart Casual
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
West 68th Street
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Public transit
1, 2, 3, B & C trains to 72nd Street, and the 1 train to 66th Street.
Additional
Bar Dining, Beer, Full Bar, Late Night, Non-Smoking, View, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 1094 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.4
service
4.0
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
93% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
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s
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food and drinks. We were promptly seated at a table with a view and the staff couldn't have been more accommodating even though it was a pre theater crowd and the place was bustling! Lovely little restaurant!

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MI
Atlantic City
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The food was great and the service was fantastic. We arrived at 5:15 and the place was 25% full. By 6 it was packed and they handled the crowd quietly and efficiently. Definitely going back.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 4

Great time for everyone

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EK
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

A good neighborhood Italian restaurant that has friendly faces, good food and does not charge outrageous prices

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R
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 4, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent food and service . Get a window seat good wine list

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R
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined on December 4, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Il Violino is a very pleasant Westside Italian restaurant. Particularly the window tables provide a relatively quiet environment. The food is very good, and they are willing to adapt menu items. Three of the four at our table had spinach ravioli with pomodoro sauce instead of cream sauce. The service is friendly. The manager/maitre d' pays close attention to all his guests.

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DC
1 review
Dined on December 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I have been to this restaurant several times for a pre-opera meal. It never disappoints. We always opt for the prixe fixed menu. The pasta is homemade and its reasonably priced. It is close to Lincoln Center and I am always confident that I will make curtain time. This time I thoroughly enjoyed the minestrone, verde salad and the John Dory. It was all deliciously prepared, a word of caution, it is alot of food. We were absolutely stuffed. Our server was very personable and knowledgable about the food. I look forward to going again.

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JD
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Perfect place for dinner before the opera! Nice menu with good variety of choices & reasonably priced. Service was courteous & attentive without being intrusive. Pleasant ambiance - quiet & relaxing atmosphere. Food was perfectly prepared. Will definitely go again, recommend highly!

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K
Philadelphia
9 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food is really good. Love the atmosphere too

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D
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 29, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

I chose this place because it had the traditional Italian food my son likes, it’s close to Lincoln Center, and prices are reasonable for the neighborhood. It did not disappoint. My price fixe meal was even better than I had anticipated and the main course had more food than I could finish.

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D
New York Area
69 reviews
Dined on November 29, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Had dinner before concert at Lincoln Center. Super convenient to go from dinner to concert.
Food is very good and well prepared. Attentive service. A bit “cozy “. But this is New York and I don’t downgrade the restaurant for tight space.

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AM
1 review
Dined on November 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great Service!! It was my boyfriends birthday, and the Matr'D and Server sang Happy birthday! Very cute and homey!

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 25, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

very nice for a good price! i sat by the window.

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JB
Dallas
3 reviews
Dined on November 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had happened on Il Violino three weeks before, looking for a place to get dinner before a NYPhil concert. Although we had to stand at the bar for a while, we managed to get seats there and had a great dinner. This time we made reservations for lunch, although it didn't look as though that was necessary. The Saturday brunch was also excellent as was the service, both interpersonally and in delivery speed. It was great sitting by the front window and watching the NYC pedestrians, which included two people who had been dining at the bar with us three weeks before--proving that Il Violino is, first and foremost, a neighborhood restaurant. We enjoyed being part of it and look forward to doing it again.

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f
Washington DC
21 reviews
Dined on November 21, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

On the way to the symphony had efficient service to get there on time!

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S
New York Area
94 reviews
Dined on November 19, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

We had a very enjoyable pre-theater dinner. The food was delicious and the portions were just right. I ordered the grilled salmon which came with nicely cooked vegetables and mashed potatoes. I requested double vegetables and no mashed potatoes and it wasn’t a problem. My husband had the fettuccine carbonara and it was very well prepared. The requested glass of prosecco was actually a small bottle, a nice touch. For dessert, an excellent tiramisu was served. The restaurant was rather busy and service little slow when we needed the check.

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OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on November 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always a good choice. Food is uniformly good and reasonably priced. Highly recommended.

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JW
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on November 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is one of my favorite restaurants. Always a good experience.

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e
San Francisco
18 reviews
Dined on November 16, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Classic Italian American cuisine, and perfect on a stormy NY night. Pasta Fagioli was like Nonna's, and the lasagna bolognese and pollo parmigiana were perfect choices. Portions are very healthy!

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AD
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on November 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had the calamari, caprese salad, pasta with mushroom and shrimp and sea bass. All were excellent, well cooked and seasoned but the pasta was memorably delicious. Service was very prompt and courteous. I would definitely return.

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VK
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on November 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great Local place with authentic Italian food and service.

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M
New York Area
15 reviews
Dined on November 14, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 2

Disappointed. Altho' we had a reservation, the only seats available were next to the door on a frigid nite or in the aisle leading to the kitchen. The place is crowded. Service is good, the waiter recommended lovely wines, but stiff. The calamari appetizer was not crisp and hurt for lack of seasoning. My osso bucco, however, was very good and my husband's filet of dory was good, just uninteresting. There are so many really good Italian restaurants here that one need not settle for this one.

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SR
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on November 13, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

Very reliable food and service. Well priced. Salmon and padta primavera were delicious.

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R
New York Area
27 reviews
Dined on November 12, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

One of the few "reasonably priced" restaurants in the Lincoln Center neighborhood. Food is generally well prepared, and one can depend on having a full meal without rushing before going to the opera, ballet, or a concert.

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NR
1 review
Dined on November 11, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 3ambience 2

The food was horrible. My daughter's spaghetti was not cooked. The tomato sauce tasted like paste. They didn't drain the water from the pasta in my dish, it was soup-y pasta. This is not Italian cooking. The environment was ok. Location was the only good thing about this restaurant.

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TF
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on November 10, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 1

I have dined here before but will never return! Service was terrible (on the verge of rude). The food was less than mediocre, and I was embarrassed because I invited friends for lunch and wished I had chosen a different location. BEWARE - AWFUL SERVICE and BAD ATTITUDE!

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PM
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on November 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Always an exceptional place to eat before the Ballet, Opera or any activities being held at Lincoln Center. The food is always good and fresh with excellent service.

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RS
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on November 10, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Nice place with great food & decent service.

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GF
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 9, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

Delicious Braised Lamb and tasty Brodo di pesce though other dishes not as good. Staff very pleasant. Nice atmosphere. Not uncomfortable for a single person arriving early. Opera sounds in the background add to people watching through the windows. Cozy.

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w
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on November 9, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 3

Service this time was mediocre, indifferent.
For example, asked for bread 3x before receiving.

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b
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 7, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent and somewhat unique Italian food. Great selection of pasta dishes that went beyond the ordinary. Service was excellent. My only issue was with the pricing of the wine list. While the food items on the menu were priced normally, the wines were marked up excessively. I ordered a bottle that I buy for $13 and they had it listed for $48.

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K
New York Area
34 reviews
Dined on November 4, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 2

Food mediocre. When we asked for more bread, waiter said they ran out. This was at 9:45 p.m.

We wanted to try it because if the reviews. Not impressed at all.

There are so many really fine restaurants on the upper west side. Go to one of them!

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JL
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on November 2, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is the third time I’ve been to Il Violino before the opera. The food is always delicious and the servers helpful and friendly. If you let them know you need to make the show, they get you out in plenty of time. Lovely atmosphere and wonderful experience all around. A little cramped, but no more than usual in Manhattan.

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j
New York Area
158 reviews
Dined on October 31, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Good option for Lincoln Center area—reasonable prix fixe menu, but when we tried to substitute pasta for mashed potatoes on the regular menu the answer was NO—that doesn’t seem right in an Italian restaurant, ambiance good at window table, not inside. Wine by the glass high priced

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G
San Diego
1 review
Dined on October 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A great experience and amazing food.

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S
Washington DC
25 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Maybe the best lasagne I have ever had! My husband agrees. The prosecco was cold and delicious!

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AK
1 review
Dined on October 20, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

Everything I wanted in a quiet neighborhood place. Simple, fresh well prepared food.
Only wish there were more wine choices on the lower end.
Will certainly be back.

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W
New York Area
21 reviews
Dined on October 18, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Very generous portions for prix fix but very narrow space between tables .

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A
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on October 18, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 2

Nice neighborhood fancy “diner”. The menu is limited but good. Unpretentious and good sized portions good for family or just a bite. Not a place to go to to try and impress someone but the glass windows on the street make for good people watching.

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E
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on October 17, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Last minute reservation
The food was good. Lots of choices
They didn’t mind that we shared, no extra plate charge
Service was good and we had plenty of time to make our performance

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