TESSA

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4.5
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1166 Reviews
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$31 to $50
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Mediterranean
A modern Mediterranean restaurant located in the heart of the Upper West Side - down the street from the Beacon Theater and a short walk from Lincoln Center, the Museum of Natural History and Central Park.
We offer an inspired and innovative menu. Taking tradition Italian, French, and Spanish dishes and using only the finest seasonal produce, local products and specialty or artisanal items from local or imported sources, we have created an extensive menu containing selections ranging from shared plates and appetizers to home made pastas and exciting main dishes. Our menus change with the seasons and there are truly "specials" on offer every night.
We apologize, but our dining areas do not accomodate Highchairs, Booster Seats, or Strollers.
What 1166 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.5
service
4.4
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
85% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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J
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love Tessa! great neighborhood spot, high quality food and great service

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p
New Orleans
23 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

The food was great as always! Servers too. We had a problem at the beginning, as they forgot about us at the bar and we waited extra long for our table.

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JO
1 review
Dined on June 11, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

great place but very noisy! our meal was very good and the service was prompt but I really could not talk to the person sitting across from me.

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B
New York Area
1 review
Dined on June 9, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

Would be a 5, but for being just a little on the expensive side

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JH
1 review
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Food and service were excellent!
A little noisy for a short time, but that was expected.

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JP
New York Area
1 review
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Innovative, creative use of ingredients excellently prepared. Staff was attentive and very pleasant. I would definitely return.

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c
New York Area
43 reviews
Dined on June 7, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 3

Excellent food and service marred by aircraft carrier level noise. I’m still hoarse from screaming at my table mates. Put down some carpeting, put up some acoustic tiles, turn down the music. Right now it is a punitive atmosphere in which to dine.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on June 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food - enjoyed all appetizers,entree and dessert!
very noisy in restaurant area, and tables for 2 were sooo close together. Service was attentive.

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J
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on June 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our experience there was amazing! Salvatore was our bartender/server and was seriously the best! Knowledgeable, thoughtful, accommodating etc. we had a total blast at the bar!!!

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TB
New York Area
43 reviews
Dined on June 4, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Great pre-show spot for Beacon Theater, just a block away from the rear entrance. Appetizers were quite tasty. Recommend the cauliflower fritto, which came nicely al dente, and the meatballs. The entrees were large portions and cooked as ordered. I had the pork chop, which was YUGE, and my companion the steak. Not an expansive wine list, but a decent selection by the glass or bottle.

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OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on June 3, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 3

The chairs need cushions! We were seated next to a very loud table of seven which made conversation almost impossible.

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c
Philadelphia
19 reviews
Dined on June 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a wonderful time. The food came up fast and the service was excellent. The staff checked on us frequently and made sure we had everything we needed. I will go back next time I'm in NYC.

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c
New York Area
1 review
Dined on June 2, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Very pleasant ambience and lovely wait staff at this reliable Upper West Side hangout. Except for the over eager bus staff, all too ready to clear your plates before you've finished, Tessa is consistently good and compatible for every meal.

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C
Chicago
13 reviews
Dined on May 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Found it on Instagram.
Visited NY from Chicago.
Loved it!
I’ll go back!!!

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OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on May 26, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Favorite spot on uws

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J
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on May 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great food, great service. Really enjoyed my meal.

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AB
New York Area
1 review
Dined on May 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had a lovely time at Tessa last night. Food was superb and very attentive service. Definitely will be back.

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SG
New York Area
12 reviews
Dined on May 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Ate there before going to The Beacon Theatre for an 8 o’clock show. Had not eaten there before. The menu looked sort of standard, but everything was so well prepared and delicious down to the smallest detail. Had the dip plate as a starter which was so good and creative. I had trout which was the special fish—tasteful size and outstanding. My friend had the pork chop which was equally good. Will definitely go back! Service was excellent and well paced.

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n
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on May 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Fresh Brook trout special served de-boned, whole with crispy skin! Yum! Service was outstanding!

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KI
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined on May 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Perfect from host to dessert

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e
New York Area
1 review
Dined on May 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We went for a birthday lunch, all women. They could not have been more accommodating--I was on a special diet and they even made a special iced tea for me. The salads were yummy.

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OT
1 review
Dined on May 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Best food we've had in a very long while! Our server Frankie was excellent, dealt with our gluten allergy, paired wine wonderfully, all recs were spot on. Incredible experience!

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L
Minneapolis
12 reviews
Dined on May 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Visited Tessa the first time in 2016 and it was on the MUST GO list now in 2019. Didn’t disappoint. Always on the stop list! Excellent.

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SU
New York Area
95 reviews
Dined on May 13, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

loved the bread with cheese and mushrooms
kale salad terrific;too large for one
half portion of foamed pasta with herbs incredible
cant wait to return

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OT
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Tessa is one of my favorite restaurants in NYC. Everything about this place is outstanding. My fiends loved it. We had the house dips. The flat bread, the mussels, and the steak.
Attentive and professional staff.

I can’t wait to con back!

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EP
New York Area
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 5ambience 5

Great ambiance, really good service, wonderful appetizers, main entrees fell short. A risotto and a pasta dish were flat. Fish was bland. Burger just okay.

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EB
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fabulous. Best restaurant on the upper west side. Been there many times and it has never disappointed

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RC
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 1

Hello,

I have dined at Tessa over ten times and never have I experienced such poor service. When after waiting for over 30 min to order, and we flagged down someone to place our order, when the waiter came by he said "what do you want?". When we explained we would like to order he said "okay what?" We said "please start with the women first" and he seemed a bit shocked. I have dined at Tessa frequently and more important bringing tables of 4+ people with me everytime. Never have I experienced such rude service as it is my local neighborhood staple and the food is incredible. I now question if I recommend this restaurant based of recent experience,.

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NY
New York Area
23 reviews
Dined on May 9, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 5ambience 5

Extremely limited menu and barely any options for vegetarians. The food wasn’t flavorful either.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on May 8, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 3

Anniversary

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p
New York Area
104 reviews
Dined on May 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It’s always a pleasure to go to TESSA. We especially like their shared plates. We had cauliflower and meatballs along with happy hour at our table. The service is great. We will definitely be back. Our waiter thoughtfully reminded us that happy hour was about to end in case we want any additional drinks. It’s really a pleasure to go there.

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AB
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Handcrafted cocktails, attentive waitstaff, a great variety of dishes to please everyone. I have dined here for lunch and dinner, our guests have enjoyed every bite. Tessa is a must go if you're in the neighborhood, a bit noisy, but then again, it is NYC!

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 4

We were seated at the back near their group seating area and it was distractingly loud. They need to consider buffering mechanisms to accommodate for the fact they large groups get very loud and the restaurant is noisy already.

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OT
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

The room was boisterous and lovely upon our arrival. We were sat immediately at a few minutes before our scheduled reservation. Our waiter was lovely and we ordered quickly, a mixture of appetizers and mains for the table. After our drinks arrived and about 25 minutes into waiting for the appetizers it occurred to me that neighboring tables who had arrived after us had gotten food and we as yet had not. Our waiter noticed at just the same time and came over to ask if we had been brought our food yet to which we said no and he said that’s what he thought but kitchen had thought differently! He went to speak to them, returned right away and was very very apologetic and said that our appetizers would be out ASAP and they’d be on the house along with a second drink. He was lovely and that level of service is what I’d expect in the situation and it all was fine from then forward with the meal.
Food arrived, it was delicious (flatbreads and spreads, pork chop, fried cauliflower, scallops special) and is go back again in a heartbeat next time I’m on the upper west side. A definite recommend.

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k
New York Area
68 reviews
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

So glad we found this place! It's really close to the Beacon Theater if you're there for a show - do not miss Tessa. We arrived early and had a drink at the bar - bartenders were wonderful. Then we sat down in the back of the restaurant - which is gorgeous - and our server was even more wonderful! Food was delicious (large portions!) and vibe was great. Will definitely return!

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d
New York Area
19 reviews
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Very attentive but not rushed .accommodated food restrictions. Seemed to be many regulars but treated us a regular highly recommended

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OT
New York Area
42 reviews
Dined on May 2, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

There were four of us, each with different tastes so there were a lot of different choices. And everything was excellent! I had the Burrata for an appetizer, the Ricotta Gnocchi for a main course. Both really delicious, and generous portions. My sister, who is vegan, was delighted with the Bruised Kale salad and Wheat Spaccatelli. The Albarino was so delicious that the four of us finished off two bottles!

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I
New York Area
166 reviews
Dined on May 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Third time at Tessa in past two months. First was a quiet rainy Friday lunch; then an early evening Easter Dinner in back wine room; last night was a very busy 7 pm Wednesday night dinner. We will return for the excellent food, friendly staff, good wine list and drinks.

We and our guests like the portion sizes and lovely plating. We have tried all parts of the menu and are eager to try more dishes. Like the white bean soup, three vegetarian dips with crisp vegetables and flat bread, cacio y pepe pasta, crabmeat risotto, chicken, budino, etc.

We are diners in our 80s and our guests range from 9 to late 70s. We like a softer noise level so will dine early when Tessa is less crowded. Highly recommend.

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F
New York Area
90 reviews
Dined on April 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were celebrating a 99th birthday. The staff treated us royally. The food was wonderful, and aside from the noise level, we had a terrific experience.

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JH
1 review
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Good was very good and the servers and service were superb. Somewhat noisy at 1:pm but quieted down shortly thereaftyrer.

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