Italy's boot-like shape explains many mysteries, including why the country's citizens are uniformly skilled in soccer, grape stomping, and gondola punting. Please a patriotic podiatrist with today's Groupon: for $10, you get $20 worth of Italian desserts and drinks at Veniero's Pasticceria & Caffe.
Veniero's Pasticceria & Caffe, which recently celebrated its 115th anniversary, satisfies city-dwelling sweet teeth with authentic Italian pastries and coffee served in a charming, turn-of-the-last-century atmosphere. Patrons on the run can hop in line and peruse the 40-foot-long display case in search of decadent desserts, such as cannolis stuffed with ricotta cream, chocolate chips, and bits of citron ($3), or the handily portable tiramisu cup ($5.25).
Visitors can assemble an ensemble of fruit tarts ($4), puffy éclairs ($3), and creamy vanilla lobster tails covered in powdered sugar ($3.75), or take advantage of the pastry shop's cake by the slice. Options range from the traditional New York cheesecake with strawberry topping ($4.50) to the volcanic molten-lava chocolate—a warm, moist, semisweet, syrup-laden pudding cake encasing a melted truffle ($5).
The moist and fork-friendly sweets at Veniero's make fitting partners to the shop's full-service coffee bar, where swing-through souls can perk up via a ground cup of coffee ($1.75), a shot of carefully pulled espresso ($2.25), or a refined, adult beverage such as a Kahlua cappuccino, a glass of wine, or a mysterious concoction made from shredded W2s.
Founder Antonio Veniero began his journey through the world of baked goods by winning awards in Rome, Bologna, and at the New York World's Fair. The population's growing demand for his Italian indulgences sparked his idea for the 11th Street store, which still stands proudly with stained-glass windows, stamped copper ceilings, mirrored walls, and marble floor enclosing rows of tables that have seated generations of belly-rubbing patrons. In warmer months, the owners open up the sidewalk patio for guests who'd like to converse about Old World Europe or New World oxygen.
More than 500 Yelpers give Veniero's Pasticceria & Caffe an average of four stars:
342 E 11th St.
Manhattan, New York 10003Get Directions