'Cesca

4.2
2812 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, 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 warm rustic environment.
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Private dining
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Cuisines
Italian, Seafood, Mediterranean
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Hours of operation
Mon–Wed 4:30 pm–11:00 pm
Thu–Sat 4:30 pm–11:30 pm
Sun 4:30 pm–10:00 pm
Brunch
Sat, Sun 11:30 am–3:30 pm
Happy Hour
Daily 4:30 pm–7:00 pm
Pre-Theater Dining
Daily 4:30 pm–6:45 pm
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Phone number
(212) 787-6300
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Payment options
AMEX, Carte Blanche, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Business Casual
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Executive chef
Luis Rojas
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Catering
Our catering team can prepare and serve a sit down lunch, dinner or a grand buffet for your guests or entertain guests for a cocktail party - all done expertly in your home or at 'Cesca. Pricing available upon request.
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
Amsterdam
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Parking details
Parking lot available on 75th between Amsterdam and Broadway.
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Public transit
1,2,3 to 72nd and Broadway and C train to 72nd and Central Park West.
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Special events & promotions
Next to Beacon Theatre
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Gift Card
Additional
Banquet, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Dancing, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Private Dining

At 'Cesca we have a wide variety of options for large groups. Contact us today to learn more about how we can make your next special occasion a memorable one!

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Specials

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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 2812 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.2based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.0
service
4.2
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
82% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
3
2
1
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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 4

The waiter was inattentive.

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SM
New York Area
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of the best on the upper west side

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EM
New York Area
38 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 5

Excellent meal and ambiance, and the lobster special was a great value.

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G
Miami
4 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 3

There was not enough wait staff. We order four starters. The waiter forgot to place one of starters. It came a bit later.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 1food 3service 1ambience 1

Disappointed. I ordered an appetizer portion of pasta. My husband ordered a full portion of pasta. They brought us same size food (small). We figured it was an error, but the waiter insisted that was a full size portion. 6 small spinach raviolis for $27??? That was a joke.

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LD
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Absolutely delicious. We ordered from the bar menu which had wonderful selections. Enjoy the bolognese with a rich red. Save room for the cannolis! Service was great too!!

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BF
1 review
Dined on September 11, 2018
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 1

After being seated, it took a full 15 minutes before a waiter arrived to ask if we wanted to order drinks. After another longer than usual delay to order our meals, my wife's salmon was brought to the table cold and had to be sent back. It was then returned to the table reheated instead of redone (a big no-no for what is supposed to be a first-class eatery.) We then had to wait again (approx 10 mins) for our dessert to be brought to the table; it never came so we finally asked - 3 different people! - for the check and left.

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LG
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on September 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Going to a concert and was recommended to cesca, enjoyed everything we ate and drank.

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a
Philadelphia
5 reviews
Dined on September 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

the perfect place to dine when you are going to the beacon theater. the price fixed menu is a terrific value. excellent food and service.

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n
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on September 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was excellent . Roasted artichokes were amazing. Lovely restaurant! Will absolutely go back!

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JL
Houston
1 review
Dined on September 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a fabulous dinner at Cesca. It was my birthday. The host at the front door wished me a happy birthday, as well as, our waiter Louis and a lovely lady, Jane (maybe a manager) who stopped by our table to wish me a happy birthday and even chatted with us making us feel very welcomed. We were visiting from Texas. These New Yorkers really made us feel at home and our dinner was fantastic!

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on September 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Noted on Open Table that is was our anniversary. They brought complimentary dessert.

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OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on September 8, 2018
Overall 2food 5service 1ambience 3

The food was fantastic but the service was horrible. Waited 15 minutes for someone to come to the table (Saturday night; 7:45 reservation), and then they launched right into specials and didn't ask for drink order. Took drink order, which took at least another 15 minutes, and then they brought the wrong drink ONLY after the manager came. Finally brought the right drink and another ten minutes until salads, which were fantastic, then another 20 minutes more until entrees, which were also great, but the delicious food doesn't make up for the truly unpleasant, frustrating and stressful experience of poor service.

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AS
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on September 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

After writing a pretty scathing review on our first visit to 'Cesca, I was hesitant to return. But the first time had been as a get together with friends who recommended it. Before that visit I had purchased a Travelzoo voucher for a meal which we did not use with our friends and so a repeat visit was called for. Truthfully, it was like we were eating at a different restaurant the second time around. The place was still crowded but by choosing to sit in the front where the bar is located, actually made it a quieter meal. The service was still excellent but the real shining difference was in the quality of the food. While at our previous visit, nothing appealed, this second time was a culinary revelation. They can really cook here! We had artichoke hearts and a calamari, shrimp and zucchini frito misto. The artichoke hearts (3 very decent sized hearts) were perfectly cooked - tender but not mushy with a drizzle of a very tasty sauce (could not identify the ingredient but VERY tasty), the frito misto was crisp and not oily, perfectly done , golden brown with a nicely spiced little cup of aioli on the side. First courses, both true winners. Main dishes were salmon (came exactly as requested, rare) and it was moist and flavorful and taglliatelle with beef and veal ragu. Both dishes were excellent and the portions plentiful enough to create a wonderful lunch for 2 the next day. An amazing panna cotta and three outstanding cannoli for dessert. Capped off by a bottle of Sasseo 2016 Primativo, we felt like we had gotten the bargain of the year for $79. Tipped on what would have been the full amount (as good Travelzooer's do) and we walked out incredibly happy. So I don't take back my previous review as it accurately reflected our experience but it was clear that the night we were there was an off night for the kitchen and we are happy to assume what we experienced the other night is truly reflective of what the kitchen can do. We will be back!

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KL
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on September 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

What an absolutely wonderful experience!! It’s now one of my new favorite restaurants!! We will definitely be back several times!!

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NO
New York Area
14 reviews
Dined on September 8, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Wonderful restaurant, darling service. Will absolutely return.

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S
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on September 7, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 1ambience 4

Food was quite bland.

Service extremely slow, given the menus when we sat, but waiter never came back. The Host came 25 mins later to take our order.

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RA
1 review
Dined on September 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The staff was attentive and the food was delicious. We enjoyed our meal from start to finish.

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a
Atlantic City
2 reviews
Dined on September 2, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Second time here. Home run again. Two for two. Great food and service.

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l
New York Area
25 reviews
Dined on September 1, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The wait staff was amazing and made a really personable experience. The food was great and the brunch drinks were strong and frequent.

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LD
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on August 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Every visit presents something new at 'Cesca! My husband and I loved the bottle of wine suggested by the sommelier. It complemented both his duck and my steak dishes perfectly. Our shared appetizer of the cauliflower fritti was delicious. Served with a great sauce that had a nice kick of flavor. Make sure you save room for dessert! The port wine, compliments of the sommelier was paired perfectly with our cheesecake and chocolate log. We can't wait to return!

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L
Liverpool
3 reviews
Dined on August 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We enjoyed our evening as it has been our wedding anniversary trip to NY. Would recommend for any occasion. The staff and food were very good thank you!

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M
New York Area
53 reviews
Dined on August 26, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 5

We had the Sunday night lobster fest. tail meat was chewy, but claws were good. lobster bisque was very good. ambiance was fantastic.

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NJ
Orlando
24 reviews
Dined on August 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had been to Cesca 4 years ago meeting cousins there.
We decided to go again while in NYC. We were just as thrilled with our dinner as we were 4 years ago. Would highly recommend to everyone..

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AS
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on August 20, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 4ambience 2

Really wanted to like 'Cesca - the greeting was very pleasant and they were willing to show us to a couple of tables before we found one that seemed like it wouldn't be crazy noisy. The place was really busy for a Monday night and the food coming out of the kitchen looked good so we had high expectations. Met some friends who, like us, are recent transplants to the UWS (from other spots in the city). The service was welcoming and I wish I could say the food lived up to the service but alas, it was not to be. My husband and I shared the tempura fried cauliflower with spicy aioli. The tempura batter was nicely done, not oily but the cauliflower, while hot, was woefully under-cooked. Couldn't bite off a piece of the floret, had to use a knife and fork and could have used a steak knife. The aoili was incredibly bland and so all in all, it was an under-cooked, fairly tasteless experience.

I ordered the chicken and it came with french fries piled on top. Tried to look architectural but failed. It just looked like someone just threw the fries on top (next to the chicken would have been a much better option). Since there were three pieces of chicken, they could have used that do something architectural. In fact, they may have, but in deconstructing the french fries, one lost the sense of the structural nature of the plate. The chicken, alas, was dry and not flavorful in any way. The skin was the highlight, crispy and perfectly done. Again, in the same vein as the cauliflower, the brussels sprouts were like tiny little hard rocks. And they had been split. Not sure how you can so under-cook sprouts that have been cut in half.

My husband ordered the tuna and he had nothing bad to say about it, but nothing good either. In writing this review (4 days after the fact) he could not remember what the tuna accompaniments were. That says something. All in all, a disappointing experience at a place we hoped would become a regular dining spot.

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ES
New York Area
1 review
Dined on August 18, 2018
Overall 3food 5service 1ambience 4

Unfortunately our server was condescending and inattentive which made the overall experience unpleasant. The food was great which is why I would recommend it and we've been there before with better service. Hopefully we don't get this server in the future.

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j
1 review
Dined on August 17, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent menu choices offered restaurant week dinner menu ; We experience restaurants duck, pasta, &fish selection which were all excellent. The desert offers were amazing. We had a great time. The staff was attentive and friendly and the wines were fairly priced.

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DC
New York Area
1 review
Dined on August 17, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 4

Uninspired food and disinterested service. Good looking space but that’s about it.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on August 17, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Attentive service. Excellent food!!!

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AB
Seattle
7 reviews
Dined on August 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This Upper West Side restaurant is has service with a smile, a wide array of authentic Italian and is well designed. The layout is also smarty as the front room feels like s small restaurant with bar seating that is ample, but the second room allows enough seating that you'll probably get a table. Waitstaff are very attentive and knowledgeable. The portions in pasta are ample!

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S
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on August 15, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Lovely dining experience celebrating a friend's birthday. Exceptionally good service - welcoming, professional, attentive (but not overbearing), warm. Especially delicious appetizer of artichoke hearts, one of the most imaginative & tasty I've ever had. Yummy, flavorful panna cotta, with a more substantial taste than I've had (I find that panna cotta is often too bland). The whole experience felt relaxed and unpressured and festive.

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OT
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on August 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had restaurant week menu and food was fabulous from appetizer to dessert . Service was excellent, we were not rushed. I’ll definitely be back!

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GR
New York Area
63 reviews
Dined on August 15, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Took advantage of Restaurant Week menu and it was a fantastic meal and great value. Ingredients are fresh and high quality. This was my second visit and I will definitely return.

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OT
New York Area
53 reviews
Dined on August 15, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

wonderful food, in a newly renovated room. probably the best restaurant on the UWS

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e
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined on August 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had the frito misto and the artichoke appetizers then salmon and pork chop entrees. Everything was really well prepared and delicious. The wait service is wonderful. Really pleasant and very attentive. A truly enjoyable experience. Will be back.

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ST
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined on August 13, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 4

Second visit and disappointing. My main course of duck was just sliced, not well cooked, meat over rests of
undefinable cut vegetables. The "apple crisp" for desert, was anything but crisp; it was even hard to bite! That is not for a place that self-titles "the best Italian restaurant in the Upper West Side" . I had left instructions with Open Table that we were celebrating a birthday but that was wholly ignored. I am sorry to report all this as we had liked the decor and ambiance of the place.

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JG
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on August 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

One of the best restaurants on the UWS, and certainly one of the best Italian cuisines. It was a quiet summer night the last time we went, so easy conversation. Can sometimes be noisy when bustling. Standouts: fungi stuffed pasta, cannolis and pana cotta with raspberry couli. Molto buono!

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on August 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fabulous Restaurant Week meal! Highly recommended, superb food and stellar service.

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LD
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on August 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Great experience at 'Cesca! The music was overwhleming at first but with a glass of wine, it truly fit the mood. The food was delicious! I LOVED the scallops and my husband couldn't stop raving about the pork chop - cooked perfectly. Save room for dessert - the Panna Cotta was outrageous. Can't wait to get into NYC again...

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ES
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on August 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was perfectly cooked, absolutely delicious and the staff were all amazing! Couldn’t be happier :)

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