Why Come Here? Upgraded Northern Italian Fare, Quiet and Charming dinner on UWS
Right Amount for 2: 1 app, 2 primis/secondis
As any many of you know, I rarely (and begrudgingly) make it up to Midtown, much less the “Upper” neighborhoods to its north. But with Hurricane Sandy leaving us and most of downtown powerless and heatless (though fortunately not homeless) we were forced to seek refuge uptown. Fortunately, some kindly friends on the Upper West Side agreed to put up with my antics for several days and took us in. Wishing to thank them for their generosity and having not eaten a hot meal in two days, we quickly set out to find a place to eat upon arriving.
We found Spiga using a Yelp “nearby” search, which was good because we never would have stumbled upon this side street gem on our own. The somewhat hidden location worked out well for us as we were able to secure the restaurant’s best table – a 4 seater with a couch tucked into a corner by the window – despite the mad rush on uptown restaurants at the time. The atmosphere was similarly understated and thankfully much calmer and quieter than what was going on on nearby Amsterdam. The space itself had the rustic Italian farmhouse feel that remains charming despite it’s ubiquity in NYC. The service was typical old-school Italian: waiters are there to be your gracious server, not your bestie.
While the service and ambiance make Spiga sound like another of the five hundred perfectly fine Italian restaurants New York has to offer, the food is what separates it from the pack. While it may not be Del Posto or L’Artusi in terms of ingenuity, the dishes are all elevated and well-executed versions of Northern Italian standards. While this may not be enough for to warrant a long ride on the 1 train ride on it’s own, Spiga is certainly worth a try if you’re in the area.
Take a look at what we had below. For more photos and reviews, check my DishEnvy page.