302 E 12TH St, New York, NY | Directions 1000340.730686 -73.985495
Monday 5:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Tuesday 5:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Wednesday 5:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Thursday 5:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Friday 5:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Saturday 5:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Sunday 4:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Neighborhoods: Downtown, East Village
Come for the decor, stay for the meatballs -- and for the love of god, ignore the promise of vegan food on the sign. This is pure old-school italian which resembles nothing so much as the restaurant where Michael Corleone kills Solozzo in The Godfather.
Wonderful Find – We went to Obscura and then wandered about looking for somewhere to eat and stumbled across John's. We had a vegan, 2 picky teens, and one normal Italian food lover. They took us right in and found a table. It was very nice but not fancy. The food arrived hot and it was DELICIOUS. We order a brushetta with guacamole and tomatoes that was wonderful. The food was perfectly seasoned, hot, and there was a ton of it. We did not leave hungry! The garlic bread was to die for and I almost didn't have room for the food when it arrived! For all four of us, including an appetizer and sodas, was $100. A real steal in Manhattan! I can't wait to go there again the next time we are in NYC.
Fair food, poor service - must miss – Been wanting to try this place for years based on it's good reputation. While the portions are generous, the food is fair at best. We had a pizza (decent) an eggplant parm and a chicken parm. Both were "eh". The real let down though, was the service and the atmosphere. For the first half of the meal we had bad 70s rock blaring at us. Although they turned it off when we asked, who ever thought this would match the old-school Italian ambiance? The pizza, our appetizer, took almost an hour to come out even though we were one of the first tables there. The waiter continued to serve everyone around us and was snippy at first when we pointed this out to him. Later, we mentioned this to the manager and instead of apologizing, we were told that, "pizza is an item that takes a long time to come out." After that, we waited quite a while for our main courses even though we asked several times. When we complained about this we were told that the reason we couldn't get our main courses was, "because no one cleared away your appetizers" so they weren't allowed to bring out our mains. We had finished the apps and had asked for it to be taken away. No one was willing for quite a while. With "meh" food, eh atmosphere and poor service, this place is a must miss.
Freshest Italian Food with Reasonable Prices – This charming Italian restaurant in the East Village was a great find. The food was fresh.. The prices didn't break the bank. And the service was impeccable from the owner down to each and every staff. As an Italian with great cooks in the family, I would say even my grandmothers would be happy after a meal at John's.
Good food, great old time candle lit ambience, great prices, say no to the pizza! – The service is good, though they tend to circle the room like sharks- no doubt because the owner bizarrely sits at a table in the dining room reading a newspaper and scrutinizing everything they do. At one point he poured water for us, offered us another drink and said something about his staff being asleep. Strange.
The food was good and always has been but like the other review on this page mentions, certain requests can be met with a waiters having to question the owner for approval as he stares at the table and considers. Great wine list and prices- terrific value, though some glass prices slide a little too high for this type of place, but still a terrific value. The pizza, new to this place, was not so good. they advertise thin crust pizza but offer only one and it's not really a pizza crust. I love that the specials are sort of a rotating permanent fixture but are really a terrific selection though we tend to get the same thing, the Papardelle, very good!!! I would reccomend this place, with it's dim candlelight and great step back in time. It really feels like you're in a time capsule and in New York these types of places with thier perfect imperfection are diappearing. Been a fan for years.
Wonderful! – Adorable little italian restaurant! The environment is so welcoming and cozy. Great menu, delicious seafood. Every dish we got was was so tastey. Love going here and it's a great little place to go on a date. Highly recommended!!
Do Not Support This Restaurant! – This is the kind of place where the waiters are scared of the owner, who is this old italian dude. This makes for an uncomfortable setting. This is one of the reasons I will never go there again.
My spaghetti was undercooked, almost raw, and there was no balance on my plate (like just a few spaghetti strings and mountains of eggplant). The tomatosauce did not have any flavor whatsoever.
My boyfriend wanted to add a few shrimps to his fettucine alfredo... a few minutes later the owner walked over and in the most disgusting way confronted my boyfriend with what he had asked of the waiter (seriously, who wants just plain fettucine alfredo??). The he added "we charge 3 dollars per shrimp, how many shrimps you want?" I lost my appetite right there. I thought the owner could have handled this way differently. He didn't have to worry about his money. Most places just add a flat fee of like 5-10 bucks if you add something to the plate. My boyfriend who is not the one to back down said "give me 8".
As you can tell, he now ended up with a plate of pasta for 45 bucks. I also tasted it and it was nothing but cream. It was so yucky. There was no flavor, no garlic, no salt, nothing, just cream, think half n half.
We ended up with a 100 dollar bill for what was supposed to be a casual italian week night meal.
I will never visit this place again, nor will I ever recommend it. Save your money!
Editorial Review – Serving traditional Italian fare like homemade pasta and fresh fish since 1908, patrons are closely packed in a white-napkin setting.
Great Italian Food! – I have been to John's about three times, and every time the food and service has been very good. I really like the salad app that is large enough for two people and all the pasta dishes I have ever had there were superb. The only draw back is there is really no bar to wait for to get a drink while you wait for a table. There is a small bar but to stand around it you will find yourself getting in the way of all the servers bustling by. either make reservations, or drink somewhere else first.
Mediocre everything – A friend of mine gave me the Diner's Deck Downtown for Xmas, so I decided to try someplace new. The description and previous reviews here made me hopeful for a good experience. When I entered, the manager came and greeted us with a smile at the door and seated us right away. We were a bit early for the main dinner crowd.
Our waiter came over and pleasantly told us all the specials, but neglected to give us the prices. There was no sheet inside the menu listing the specials, so we had to keep asking him the price of any we were interested in. We did mention the appetizer we wanted, but that we weren't ready to order the rest of the meal. He disappeared and neglected to tell us that the waiters share equally in servicing tables. We kept looking for him, until another waiter came over to our order.
Apparently that delayed our appetizer from being put in, while another couple had already been seated beside us, now munching happily on their appetizer. Our stuffed mushrooms were lukewarm, when they arrived, not terribly tasty and looked like someone threw them on a plate too large for the 4 bite size pieces. The main courses were better, I got the home made meat sauce and pasta special which was very good. My date's salmon was also excellent.
While we were eating, the rest of the dinner crowd arrived and service became non-existent. We tried desperately to get the attention of any waiter, but they pretended we were invisible and kept bussing bread and taking new orders from the tables just seated. The couple at the table next to us (the one's that came in after we did) left long before we got our check as well as our change.
We did not order alcohol with the meal so we were quite surprised when our bill for $55 arrived. With an additional $10 tip, I would have to say that this is not a place to which either of us would return. I don't think the value is there, and the service and food was inconsistent.
OLD WORLD ITALIAN CHARM – This is a hidden gem among Italian restaurants in NYC. John's has been here since 1908 and to enter is like taking a step back in time. The decor is old school Italian - the wonderful aroma hits you immediately. Very romantic and perfect for a first date. Tables are set with a soft glowing candle. The food is resonably priced and served in large portions that feel like a home made meal. I brought some business associates here from Tempe, Arizona and they absolutely loved it! You certainly don't get Italian food like this in the desert! It's away from the touristy mid-town and spots in Little Italy .... Enjoy!
Sign in with Facebook Sign in with Facebook to see what your friends are up to!
Do you have a review of John's Restaurant on your blog? If you include the Citysearch image link (shown below) in your post, we'll automatically link to your review from the business profile page. Here's how our Linkback system works:
The Linkback system is free and automatic. It's really that easy.
To link to our business profile page, copy the html below to your web page.