Paola's Restaurant

4.7
1176 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Italian
"Everybody in New York seems to be looking for the perfect neighborhood restaurant. I think I found it."
- Ruth Reichl, The New York Times

For almost 30 years, Executive Chef Paola Bottero has offered an authentic Italian dining experience and a warm welcome on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. An icon of the Carnegie Hill Neighborhood, Paola’s serves lunch, dinner, weekend brunch and Stuzzichini “lite bites” at the gracious bar or al fresco at the outdoor tables. Joined by her son Stefano, together they are committed to the freshest ingredients and the truest interpretations of La Cucina Italiana. Benvenuti!

What 1176 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.7
food
4.5
service
4.4
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
98% of people would recommend it to a friend
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PS
New York Area
1 review
Dined on January 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The dishes at Paola are consistently exquisite, the service hits the sweet spot accommodating but never intrusive and the stylish deco ambience takes you back in time. Bravo!

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j
New England
102 reviews
Dined on January 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

You have to love Paola's: the welcoming atmosphere, the warm service, and above all the excellent food and wine: the kitchen always turns out dishes with deep flavor, and the staff knows just the best glasses or bottles to complement them. They do a mean Negroni, too, I might add ...

It does not strive for glacial perfection; little slips can occur. But this belongs among those restaurants where such things do not matter: it makes you feel good from start to finish. People keep coming back - with good reason.

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L
New York Area
47 reviews
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

Always good

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CC
New York Area
10 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Some of best pasta in Upper Manhattan!

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n
New York Area
230 reviews
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Always great quality. Excellent service.
Grown up restaurant! NOT shabby or marginal like other Italian restaurants.

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FF
New York Area
11 reviews
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Food and cocktails very good

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OT
Dallas
1 review
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Great atmosphere and service! We eat here on every trip to NYC.

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MG
New Orleans
23 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delightful experience - great food, service, ambiance. I love this neighborhood restaurant.

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OT
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on December 28, 2018
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 1

You should not accept reservation at 10 if you are going to give a bad service because you are in a hurry

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My personal favorite Italian restaurant in NYC.

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JM
1 review
Dined on December 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent Service coupled with excellent food. Quiet Restaurant perfect for a Business Lunch. Very comfortable atmosphere. The Pork and escarole I had for lunch with perfectly seasoned and presented. One of the better dishes I've had in NY City for lunch. I will return to Paola

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D
New York Area
36 reviews
Dined on December 25, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Wonderful food and atmosphere. Service a bit erratic but as it was Christmas Eve it was busy.

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T
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 4

The food is great but the service is a little standoffish. Our entrees came out a half hour after we had finished the appetizers and came out only after we asked what the problem was — the table next to us came after we did and were finished before we got our entrees. For such a good restaurant, that’s unusual and unwanted.

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n
New York Area
55 reviews
Dined on December 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Fantastic as always. I wish I lived closer so I could come here more often. Everything is always delicious. Can't wait to go back.

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RC
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful evening, food was absolutely delicious, every course.

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G
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on December 20, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love the place, people and food

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MS
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 19, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

This is the place for a really delicious lunch on upper Madison Avenue near the Guggenheim and Jewish Museum. Highilights: perfect minestrone, artichokes, salad, lemon tart.... Excellent espresso.

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T
New York Area
78 reviews
Dined on December 13, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Definitely very good but used to be better. Some dishes better than others. Very good pasta.

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GS
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 2

Waited for 20 min just to put my order while place was almost empy

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DD
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Paola's in all it's manifestations has always been an amazing restaurant. Plenty of delicious options for a vegetarian like me. Our meal was wonderful, the service fantastic, and I will continue to be a customer as long as they are open.

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RJ
New York Area
38 reviews
Dined on November 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This was our first time here and we had a great experience... the food, service and staff were excellent... we look forward to our next visit..,

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C
New York Area
14 reviews
Dined on November 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

High quality food and service. Very vibrant

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j
New York Area
29 reviews
Dined on November 30, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Perfect place for an after Museum lunch with an old friend!!

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N
Los Angeles
26 reviews
Dined on November 29, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

always excellent. best restaurant in area. casual dress, attentive staff, wonderful kitchen. one feels at home here.

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d
New York Area
26 reviews
Dined on November 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Paola’s is always excellent. The interior is lovely. The service is excellent. The food is delicious. All around, I really love it

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R
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on November 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Cannot have a bad meal! We have followed from further east to her home on Madison!

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TT
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on November 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent as slways

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OT
1 review
Dined on November 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Visiting from out of town we wanted a nice local restaurant with excellent food and service. We felt at home in Paola’s and we’re treated like we were well known customers. The food and wine list are excellent and it’s a good value for your money.

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LJ
New York Area
29 reviews
Dined on November 20, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My favorite restaurant in all of NYC! Always delicious........wonderful staff.
Cannot wait to return.

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DK
Las Vegas
1 review
Dined on November 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food, excellent service

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SU
New York Area
83 reviews
Dined on November 18, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

The wines by the glass are very good.
The Roman artichoke was delicious and do was the veal chop.

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m
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 11, 2018
Overall 3food 5service 2ambience 3

Service was rushed and a bit disorganized..not the usual good job.

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n
Chicago
13 reviews
Dined on November 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

authentic Italian recipes from different regions, great service, friendly atmosphere.

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J
New York Area
28 reviews
Dined on October 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fabulous food and service. No loud music but the noise level from conversation is high when the restaurant is crowded. Love this place.

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S
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Very good choice I had duck breast which compared favorably with others I had other places. My friends all enjoyed their choices too.

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a
New York Area
44 reviews
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of my all time favorites. Never disappoints and this wasn’t any different!
Great can’t wait to return
I live in east village and travel uptown any
chance I can go dine there

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Y
New York Area
13 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 3ambience 4

Italian food like in Italy. All the pastas are homemade and truly sublime.

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r
Washington DC
14 reviews
Dined on October 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Always happy at this restaurant Services always very good in the food is delicious

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j
New York Area
99 reviews
Dined on October 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Paola's is my very favorite restaurant on the upper east side. The food is always amazing, as is the service and ambiance. Paola's is a gift!

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LF
New York Area
25 reviews
Dined on October 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We might have found it. A restaurant we actually want to return to. We have one by Lincoln Center ( Cafe Fiorello) but here near the Guggenheim we have been on a hunt. Paola's might just be it. The Inside is much more serene (and I want to say majestic) than the outside causes you to anticipate. Once inside we were graciously shown to our table, the menu looked fabulous. We tried a Caesar Salad as we ALWAYS do and it was good, really good. We split the scallops which couldn't have been better with a perfect sweet sear. We didn't try dessert because I am on a cake tasting binge and brought in a slice from Lady M( not in love with it) and while we unwrapped it clean plates and forks arrived.
The crowd was what I would describe as local and looking like they knew what they were doing. Finally, a place to return to!!

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