'Cesca

4.1
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3421 Reviews
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$31 to $50
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Italian
An original pioneer of the casual upscale dining scene on the Upper West Side since 2003, Cesca is proud to offer you the best culinary experience featuring contemporary farm-to-table Italian-American cuisine that explodes with flavor and freshness. Housemade pastas, poultry, steaks, seafood, wood-burning oven, artisanal cocktails and an Award Winning wine-list, all complementing this upscale cosmopolitan establishment.
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Sun 11:30AM - 2:00PM 2:15PM - 3:30PM 4:30PM - 5:30PM 8:30PM - 10:00PM
Mon - Tue 4:30PM - 5:30PM 8:30PM - 10:00PM
Wed - Fri 4:30PM - 5:30PM 9:00PM - 10:00PM
Sat 11:30AM - 2:00PM 2:15PM - 3:30PM 4:30PM - 5:30PM 9:00PM - 10:00PM

What 3421 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.1based on recent ratings
4.2
food
4.0
service
4.2
ambience
3.8
value
Noise · Moderate
79% of people would recommend it to a friend
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Y
New York Area
13 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall4food4service4ambience4

I've enjoyed a number of great meals here and this time was no exception. Very nice menu, terrific and reasonably priced wine selection. I will certainly be back.

NY
San Francisco
26 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall2food1service4ambience4

I have been a Cesca fan for years but this most recent visit did not meet my expectations. The food was sub-par, the pasta dishes we ordered were just mediocre. Hopefully it was just an off night.

AS
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Wow!! I had the Caesar Lacinato salad appetizer Paranza fried shrimp calamari which was excellent!! and main dish Agnello all’s Scottadito grilled lamb chops that were so delicious and tasty! Best I have ever eaten. Had Cabernet 2 glasses that was perfect with the lamb chops!! My experience was exquisite and I am very impressed! Will come back again for sure!! Cesca and crew thank you for a beautiful night of delicious food and service.

OT
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Highly recommended! I had the best dinning experience with my friends and family! I had the branzino and the fried cauliflower which were both delicious! The ambiance was great and our waiter on point! I am definitely coming back soon

DT
New York Area
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Excellent food and service. Very engaging management. I'll be back.

OT
New York Area
16 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Absolutely fabulous from the minute we walked in until we walked out! 6 of us had a variety of food and drinks. All were wonderful. We can't wait to go back.

G
New York Area
123 reviews
Dined on November 29, 2019
Overall4food4service3ambience2

This is that rare high-class restaurant where the food is actually the best thing about the experience. There are some really extraordinary things on the menu--notably the bistecca pork chop. Salad also excellent. On the other hand, the service, while perfectly adequate, is a little off-handed and with an attitude that would make more sense in a place that felt more like a family outing than a dress-up evening. And ditto for the surroundings, which are okay but not particularly stylish. Still, I'd rather have the food be the best thing than the surroundings or the service.

OT
Birmingham
1 review
Dined on November 28, 2019
Overall3food2service2ambience3

I don’t think I would go back again.

a
Seattle
1 review
Dined on November 28, 2019
Overall2food3service2ambience3

On any normal night, Cesca is one of the safer "go to" places on the upper west side for quality food at not ridiculous, but not cheap, prices. Their duck is usually great and they know how to make pasta and steak . . all in all, a good place to dine.

That said, this review is specifically about the Thanksgiving meal which was, unfortunately, mediocre. Part of the disappointment came before the meal even started. When we made the reservation a few weeks ago, we asked about the Thanksgiving menu and were told it would be a modified menu with some of the items from the regular menu, along with some Thanksgiving-specific options. Since we're not HUGE turkey eaters, that would be great. Two days before Thanksgiving, we walked over to, again, check on the menu options and were told there would probably be 10 entrees or so, that it would not be a fixed price meal, and that dessert would not be included, although offered. (This was asked because we decided to have ice cream and pie back at the apartment after dinner.) Lastly, on the way to the dinner, one of our party checked the web site and the Thanksgiving menu and was excited to see some of the items offered.

When we arrived at the restaurant, we were handed the single-page Thanksgiving special meal. No appetizers offered . . everyone got THE soup, THE kale salad, a choice of one of three entrees, and a choice of one of three desserts. That's it. Nothing else from the menu, no other options . . not the things on the web site. It was disappointing, again, before we even started the meal. (Made more so by actually walking over two days prior to ask about these specific things.)

The soup was was fine . . the kale salad was, well, a whole lot of kale with a tiny bit of topping and dressing; the turkey was nothing special -- the carrots in the carrot/brussel sprout accompaniment, were cold -- and the dessert, again, nothing special. We never got the coffee we ordered.

All in all, a very "just ok" meal ... shame.

P
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on November 28, 2019
Overall1food2service2ambience2

We made a reservation weeks in advance for the prix fixe Thanksgiving meal. The Thanksgiving menu was posted online and our decision was made based on this. When we arrived at Cesca, were seated and presented with the menus, they were a very abridged version of what was online. Long story short, we left. When you omit posted entree options such as steak and scallops and leave only rigatoni or turkey (without any reduction in price and without prior notice) it's either a scam or horrible planning. Either way we wanted no part of it. Thank you Cesca for making this a Thanksgiving we won't soon forget.

PP
Philadelphia
4 reviews
Dined on November 27, 2019
Overall3food3service3ambience3

Food was bland. Pork had no flavor despite being a nice cut. Pasta sauce was tasteless. Caesar salad had an odd taste and wasn’t made with romaine.

DK
Las Vegas
17 reviews
Dined on November 27, 2019
Overall2food1service4ambience2

My friend and I each ordered a different ravioli dish. Neither was good. The appetizer was fine and the desserts were very good. I wouldn’t go back and try this place again because I didn’t like the entrees. The server was very good and was well versed in the menu.

NB
1 review
Dined on November 26, 2019
Overall2food2service1ambience4

Service was not good . Took our waitress over 15 minutes to finally take our drink orders which I got myself at the bar.
We ordered the fried cauliflower which came pretty quick and was delicious.
Then again I wanted to order another drink but our waitress was no where to be found.
I had to get the attention of the bartender who made us a second round and had it delivered to us.
Then we received our dinner order the lobster ravioli for my wife and the tagliatelle with bolognese sauce for myself.
I found the ravioli to be fishy and the bolognese was extremely bland

PR
New York Area
36 reviews
Dined on November 24, 2019
Overall3food4service2ambience3

Disappointed. Seated at a table without a table cloth, and very negligent service from beginning to end. Unlike any prior visit. Food was fine.

JC
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 24, 2019
Overall3food2service4ambience4

Service was great. Needs a new chef. Good menu bad execution.

CT
New York Area
16 reviews
Dined on November 24, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Fabulous place with amazing food (I recommend the salmon) and top-notch service. We were at Cesca on a busy Sunday night, but our server (Yarda) never missed a beat. We can't wait to go back. Don't miss your chance to dine out at this incredible UWS treasure.

LK
New York Area
23 reviews
Dined on November 24, 2019
Overall2food2service1ambience1

We recently went to Cesca for lunch/brunch. While dinner there has been amazing in the past, menu was limited at lunch/brunch and kitchen inflexible on gluten free items. Service was also painfully slow.

OT
New York Area
34 reviews
Dined on November 23, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We love 'Cesca! Being big fans of the Beacon Theater, we have made 'Cesca our favorite pre and post theater venue. We love the variety of choices on their menu, their drinks are always overflowing and the service is wonderful! We are especially fond of their floor manager, Meghan. Each visit is always memorable and thoroughly enjoyable. You must try the pork chop and mushroom ravioli!

PD
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on November 23, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed our meal at Cesca. Our shared appetizer was excellent and we both loved our large portions of pasta. Finally, the homemade cheesecake and brownie desserts were top notch. All in all we had a first rate dinning experience and will return to Cesca when we are next in New York City.

TM
Miami
3 reviews
Dined on November 23, 2019
Overall2food3service2ambience4

Poor service waiter never came over to ask about the food and food came out warm not hot. Manager came over with check and never ask how was service.

OT
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on November 22, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great experience at Cesca! Would recommend it and would like to go back.

NT
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on November 21, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a great meal at the bar- so glad Cedca is in our neighborhood

CS
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 21, 2019
Overall2food3service1ambience1

Theater show

D
New York Area
22 reviews
Dined on November 21, 2019
Overall2food3service2ambience4

Over a period of 100 minutes the kitchen could not get out more than a starter. Although across from the Beacon the management has not learned from the Theatre District cousins how to handle a show deadline.

OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 21, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food. Excellent service.

OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on November 20, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food was great. Had the halibut and it was the best halibut I have ever had!! We all loved the food. Ambiance great!! Service great!! Excited to go back and eat here. Thanks Cesca👍👍

R
New York Area
18 reviews
Dined on November 20, 2019
Overall4food3service3ambience4

Always good and a wonderful restaurant for conversation, friendship, family or celebration. Good food, not irrational prices and a lovely room.

KM
New York Area
25 reviews
Dined on November 20, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We dined at Cesca prior to seeing a show at the Beacon Theater. I was a little wary after reading some reviews about their service, but wanted to try it. I am so glad I did because we had a wonderful experience. Our servers were friendly and professional, and our cocktails and food were delivered in a very timely manner. The restaurant’s ambiance is warm and welcoming, cocktails are well made, and the food is delicious. We enjoyed the baby kale Caesar salad and the Buratta appetizer. Both presentations were nicely done. We chose the duck and salmon for our entrees and were very happy with both dishes. Again, our server was friendly and attentive, and prompt to provide the bill when we asked for it, even though the restaurant was becoming quite busy at this point. I will happily recommend Cesca to friends and plan to dine there again the next time I am staying in the area.

m
Miami
1 review
Dined on November 18, 2019
Overall4food5service4ambience4

Great spot for a business or reunion get together where conversation is important. Tables spaced far apart.
Good service and excellent food.

s
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on November 17, 2019
Overall2food3service1ambience3

Awful service. Out of first two wines selected. No wine help. Why open Sundayif understaffed. Food just ok, overpriced given quality.

s
New York Area
22 reviews
Dined on November 16, 2019
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Having had a less than satisfactory experience at lunch a while back, we returned for dinner and had a very gratifying meal. The sun-dried tapenade at the beginning of the meal is an excellent palate awakener. We shared the paranza, fried shrimp, zucchini and calamari, which, though listed as an antipasti, is easily enough for a main course, it arrived crispy and hot. I can also recommend the salmon tartar, a nice alternative to tuna, the mushroom pasta and the halibut, which was perfectly cooked. We ended with the chocolate mousse pave, a creamy chocolate confection that makes you want to order another.

TM
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 16, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food was great! Service great! We were seated even arriving early! Warm and cozy seating area

V
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on November 15, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Great seafood spot. Definitely make a reservation as the place is always busy!

RB
New York Area
13 reviews
Dined on November 15, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience4

I arrived early to a 6:45 reservation at about 6:25 but was seated immediately even if my wife was meeting me and was not yet in the restaurant. That was refreshing rather than being told to sit at the bar and wait. And the restaurant was quite busy and almost full.
The staff are very friendly and professional at the same time. They were so nice I refrained from complaining that the service might be a bit slow. It was just this side of leisurely which was quite ok if not in a rush. We had almost 90 minutes before our show at The Beacon Theater around the corner so we were quite relaxed about this.
I feel confident that if we mentioned we were in a hurry we would have been accommodated gladly. It is a busy, bustling NYC restaurant but with a vibe that is quite neighborhood in feel as well and also exceptional quality.
We both really like a very good pork chop and normally wouldn't order the same dish but this time we did.
It is without question the best pork chop I have ever had. It was close to 2 inches thick on the bone and cooked so perfectly with a slightly pink center and crisp caramelized crust. It was completely juicy and tender and truly unlike any pork chop we had ever eaten.
After the first bite we looked up at each other with surprise and said 'Best Ever' to each other!
When I asked the waiter if we'd made a good selection on order he said it was the best in the City and it was an understatement. This was the best pork chop on the planet.
Perhaps this place is famous for this and I didn't know but I am sure it will soon be the 'go-to' place for those who like Pork Chops but be forewarned it is nothing like anything you have ever experienced.
I didn't even know a pork chop could taste like this or have the consistency like this.
Its going to be hard to order anything else the next time we are there for dinner.

OT
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined on November 14, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Delicious food/good wine/reasonable service. Would recommend.

a
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on November 14, 2019
Overall3food2service1ambience4

I expected the food to be so much better than it was. The salad was e clement, but the tagliatelle with bolognese was disappointing. Service was horrible. The restaurant was far from full (only three other tables). Our waiter was inattentive and borderline rude. He asked if we wanted fresh pepper. When someone said yes, he brought a salt and pepper to the table. I would not return and would not recommend.

OT
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on November 12, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It was great
Love it

LN
San Francisco
16 reviews
Dined on November 12, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience4

We enjoyed everything we ate, and the kitchen dispatches each plate with care. We also took advantage of their excellent wine list, celebrating with a fine bottle of Brunello di Montalcino. Our waiter was charming and the ambiance is generally nice. Perhaps some of the tables are too close to the bar area for evenings when the bar is busy. Still - every attempt was made to make us happy. We will definitely return next time we are in NYC.

OT
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on November 11, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

always enjoy dining at Cesca

OT
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on November 10, 2019
Overall1food1service1ambience5

Service is super slow , i used open table so they would be ready and expecting us .
Food is average at best took forever to get appetizers ..... absolutely not a place to go back to