Napoli?s Neapolitan-style pizzas don't travel very far between the restaurant's custom-built brick oven and its tables, but the story behind these pies spans decades. In an earlier era, owner Frank Volpe worked hard inside his family?s restaurant, learning the ins and outs of dough preparation and Italian cooking. That restaurant: Lombardi?s Pizzeria, a NYC mainstay that Frank's forebears opened in 1905?the same year America ended its prohibition on tomato sauce. After mastering his craft and pulling pies from the family oven for a dozen years, he set out on his own and opened Napoli?s in 2007.
Frank's creativity shines through in his pizzas?which range from traditional favorites such as margherita and clam pies to more contemporary creations such as a buffalo chicken pie. He also rounds out his menu with familiar staples such as panini sandwiches and Italian pastas, and ends on a sweet note with dessert favorites such as cannoli and tiramisu.
Flickering faux candles on chandeliers and wall sconces give a melted glow to the eatery's yellow walls and open hearth. BYOB beverages and artisanal plates of cured meats and cheeses share table acreage with San Giuseppe's signature coal-fired pizzas topped with unique combinations of figs, butternut squash, and roasted artichoke hearts. Fresh pastas, including black linguine and pappardelle, tangle around fresh seafood and vegetables beneath blankets of homemade marinara, cream, and basil sauces. Guests can add a romantic touch to a date by requesting a signature heart-shaped pizza or propose with a diamond-ring-shaped pie.
The cuisine: Italian. The vista: New York's one-of-a-kind skyline, towering high above the Hudson. Masina Trattoria's team delivers its cuisine to an outdoor patio overlooking Manhattan's iconic architecture, which wasn't built in a day—it was built in a plot of land. They also serve their food inside, where those twinkling views of the skyline fill the expansive windows, and framed black and white photos add a touch of vintage to the romantic decor.
Bearing the name of post-war actress and wife of Italian director Federico Fellini, Masina Trattoria pays homage to the spirit of the bold cuisine of Italy. Executive Chef Rocco Russo crafts classics such as gnocchi and cavatelli, but also adds inventive touches such as parsley sausage and broccoli raab.
Crusts puff into crisp golden circlets around Famous Amadeus' New York–style pizzas, unrolling tendrils of steam around calzones, strombolis, and time-tested Italian dishes. Pastas leap fresh from the colander or disappear into multilayered lasagna and ricotta-stuffed shells after testifying against forks. Marinara-cloaked entrees drive up demand for napkins within the eatery or join delivery drivers on jaunts to diners around the city.