Il Violino

4.4
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1283 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.
What 1283 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
4.4
food
4.4
service
4.3
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Quiet
97% of people would recommend it to a friend
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MN
Naples
30 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Ordered things we loved at this place. I finished mine. My wife had TWO chicken breasts. Much to much so she left one piece. But it was delicious

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

IlViolino is my favorite local restaurant. As usual, the experience was impeccable. The food was spectacular, the service was exceptional and the whole experience was perfect.

EM
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on September 11, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

An old favorite in the neighborhood; consistently very good.

D
New England
8 reviews
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Outstanding service. Loved the server

j
New York Area
1 review
Dined on September 6, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

Food came out only warm. Cheese on top of eggplant was old and tough. Sent it back and received a fesh dish that was more to my expectation. I would not go back to this restaurant.

MD
New York Area
48 reviews
Dined on August 17, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

A great experience,wonderful table food was excellent

RH
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on August 15, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

A very nice place to have lunch, especially with the reasonably-priced lunch special.

OT
New York Area
90 reviews
Dined on August 13, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 5ambience 5

Same old ... same old

Reliable but menu has not changed in 2 1/2 years. Service and staff are wonderful.

PP
1 review
Dined on August 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I had popiette which was outstanding. My husband had a veal dish and said it was awesome. This is the second time I've been to this restaurant and I can say the service is outstanding and the food worth stopping in for.

KB
Detroit
34 reviews
Dined on August 9, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 5

One of our regular spots love it-Especially the prefix lunch. Wasn’t a fan of the chicken Parm too much breading everything else was great as is the pasta I usually order and the chicken piccata the alternative on the Specials...

CD
New York Area
22 reviews
Dined on August 8, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

I can't re-review Il Violino anymore - go there always for any Lincoln Center events - but it never disappoints. And any guests who join me are always pleased. We always sit in the window section, by the windows, and while space is tight, there is a sense of openness which is welcome. It will remain a staple for me as long as it maintains its current standards across all points (food,service,ambiance, etc).

AB
New York Area
19 reviews
Dined on August 7, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 5

We had a lovely dinner. The food was very tasty. We were not impressed by the Cabernet. The service was terrible. We were there an hour before we got our salads and then there was a longer than usual wait for our main courses. I appreciated that the server waited until we both were done before clearing the table. Then it took a very long time to get the bill even though we said we didn’t want coffee or dessert. We were left wondering what it would have been like to eat there when it was busy.

J
Atlanta
18 reviews
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 3ambience 5

THIS IS OUR NEIGHBORHOOD FAVORITE SPOT. CLEARLY A PLACE FOR THE LOCALS.

JS
New York Area
11 reviews
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

my wife and i sat at the bar on 8/4/19 at 6PM,Daniella was our sever and bartender.she was great, we will be back in because of her.

JL
New York Area
45 reviews
Dined on August 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

As usual, our meal at Il Violino was excellent. It is certainly good to have such a place on the Upper West Side that is consistently so good and friendly.

ET
New York Area
104 reviews
Dined on July 30, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 3

First time visit. Food was good...we especially enjoyed the chicken marsala and the veal piccata. Service was very efficient but not terribly welcoming or friendly, especially for first-time visitors.

OT
1 review
Dined on July 26, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 3

Food was fair. Nothing special. Mussel appetizer lacked taste. Small portions. Would not make substitutions which was a big turn off and very unaccommodating. Would not go back.

p
Las Vegas
9 reviews
Dined on July 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The food was excellent! Highly recommend

HW
New York Area
29 reviews
Dined on July 23, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Pasta is homemade and great! Chicken parm was a substantial portion, but the chicken was overcooked and tough. I have ordered this before and it was fine. We will go again.

G
Miami
1 review
Dined on July 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent!

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H
Chicago
39 reviews
Dined on July 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful cozy friendly and authentic are words that come to mind. Not your typical Italian American fare. Much more interesting and authentic to Italy. My gust and I truly enjoyed our meals. The daily special lentil soup along with the squid ink homemade pasta with calamari was tops. The risotto with seafood was also exceptional.

JM
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on July 18, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Have my favorite dish here, shrimp oreganata, which never disappoints. Wait staff very personable.

l
St. Louis
1 review
Dined on July 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We love this restaurant! We discovered it when we lived in NYC for a few years and every time we come back, we eat here. Simply delicious!

L
New York Area
14 reviews
Dined on July 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great place for pre theater lunch near Lincoln Center. Good food at reasonable prices for the area.

s
New York Area
483 reviews
Dined on July 14, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

was beautifully quiet when I went with a friend for lunch. they respectfully did not rush us as we had not seen each other in awhile and it also was fairly empty. the food was very good and the prices fair. a good spot for lunch in the neighborhood.

s
New York Area
119 reviews
Dined on July 11, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 3

Solid Italian fare perfect for pretheater and Lincoln Center.

ED
1 review
Dined on July 10, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

The most outstanding aspect of our experience at Il Violino was the sensitivity and respect the staff showed the elderly member of our party who we were honoring. This was my 94-yr-old cousin's first dinner out since moving into an assisted living facility. The changes of the past month had been very challenging for her, and the thing she missed the most about her new loss of freedom was good Italian cooking. Though she was unable to eat more than a third of her lasagna before becoming to full to continue, she loved it. I was very pleased with my Vitello alla Marsala, and everyone enjoyed sharing an Antipasto Misto. The only disappointing dish was the Spaghetti with 'Fresh Tomato Sauce'. Not only were there no visible fresh tomato bits, but the sauce tasted a lot like canned Franco American sauce off a supermarket shelf. Very boring. We ended on a very pleasant note by sharing a very nice Panna Cotta and Tiramisu.

Back to the manner in which my relative was treated... The server seemed to quickly sense that she was a bit overwhelmed by the menu options and made an effort to be sure she understood the specials, also giving her plenty of time to make her choices. And the crowning touch was when we realized that she was having difficulty standing on the sidewalk waiting for our ride and we asked for a chair. The staff immediately and very discretely brought one out to her.

Well into the next day, my cousin continually commented on how much she enjoyed her big night out. I know it had a lot to do with how she was treated at Il Violino. And since her happiness meant so much to the rest of us, we're very glad we chose your restaurant.

Grazie Mille!!!

NC
New York Area
1 review
Dined on July 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Lovely little restaurant that's perfect for pre-Lincoln Center shows. The pasta is cooked to perfection and the ambiance is delightful. A bit crowded together, especially if you're in a larger body, but great nonetheless.

TS
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on July 6, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 4ambience 4

It’s in a great location by Lincoln Center. However, the food is not good at all. We had a tasteless Caesar’s salad and a tasteless caprese salad. We shared the spaghetti pomodoro and the spaghetti was pasty and the sauce was like Ragú out of a jar and ladled on it as such.
The homemade tartufo was also tasteless.
The coffee was excellent.
Service was pretty good too.

SM
1 review
Dined on July 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Absolutely lovely! The food was delicious and the staff accommodating. Looking forward to returning sometime in the future!

MW
New York Area
1 review
Dined on July 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Enjoyed a lovely pre-ballet lunch walking distance from Lincoln Center. We had a cosy table in the front window - great views. Service was great - food was delicious. Truly enjoyed & would highly recommend.

OT
Atlanta
2 reviews
Dined on July 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Delicious! I had the lasagna. My go to when I visit new Italian restaurants. It did not disappoint. Typical NYC restaurant. Tight quarters, but they made it very comfortable for us. The 4 of us were able to have a very nice meal and engaging conversation. Thanks to the staff who made it a nice evening.

d
New York Area
31 reviews
Dined on July 5, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Great food. Lovely table by the window. Service exceptional. Love this place.

s
New York Area
483 reviews
Dined on July 5, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

what a treat in this day and age to not only enjoy a delicious meal but also in a quiet setting and what a good value to the prix-fixe lunch. a real find and will be back next week for what I trust will be a similar experience. and the lasagna bolognese was outstanding.

GS
New York Area
1 review
Dined on June 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Extraordinary experience, food, service, wine, all incredible

H
New York Area
14 reviews
Dined on June 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and service!

H
New York Area
46 reviews
Dined on June 24, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 3

Ordered spaghetti and meat balls which I split with my husband. I had wanted a 1/2 order but not available. The pasta was under cooked although the sauce was pretty good. We only got 4 tiny meatballs.

It’s too bad this restaurant doesn’t have two sizes of their pasta.

WP
New York Area
11 reviews
Dined on June 21, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Simply, delicious and relaxing. Feels like an old school restaurant.

SR
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined on June 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very good food—convenient for Lincoln Center—good service—We were done with dinner in plenty of time to get to the ballet on time.

RC
New York Area
35 reviews
Dined on June 21, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

Not what I'd call authentic Italian cooking but serviceable enough, especially if you need something in the Lincoln Center area.

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