192 E 2ND St, New York, NY | Directions 1000940.722279 -73.984106
Neighborhoods: East Village, Downtown, Alphabet City
Great experience! – This was my first-time going to IL Bagato and it was a great experience! Although we had to wait for a bit for our table we knew that was a possibility. It's a small restaurant that is always full... to me that usually equals a great restaurant with amazing food. While we waited, we enjoyed drinking a glass of wine downstairs at the bar. Once seated, we were immediately greeted and were told the list of amazing specials, two of which we ordered. The appetizer special we ordered was a mozzarella ball that had fresh ricotta inside of it -AMAZING. The service was not over the top yet attentive. I would recommend this to anyone who loves Italian food!
Excellence in a small package – First of all I have to laugh at the pompous oaf that gave this restaurant a 1 star because their party (I am assuming something neighboring 30) showed up and wasn't given the powdered whig treatment. This is a SMALL downtown restaurant, that might have room for a party of 4-6... above that you are a fire hazard. Homey restaurants, be it BBQ, soul, or real authentic Italian (not noodles and ketchup most Americans eat) are down to earth and you should bear that in mind.
That said, I discovered Il Baggato years ago when it first opened before the yuppie-foodie downtown-slumming hoardes of the upper east and west sides descended like carrion hunters... and sitting downstairs was a treat, with DJ, quiet unpretentious couch seating, and simply the best rustic Italian in the city. Now I only order delivery, but should you be so bold, don't expect your extended posse and your assistants to get seats. Go early, late, and just with a small group and you'll enjoy some beautiful homemade Roman eats. Excellent seafood too btw.
Nice ambience, average food – I live near this restaurant and while not mystified at its popularity (it offers decent food at reasonable prices), I am not a huge fan myself. While some of the pasta dishes are quite good, I find this to be average food that for the most part, I could make better myself. Sometimes they are not very attentive to their ingredients. For example, if you can't get good tomatoes, you really should not sell insalata caprese (mozzarella & tomato salad). It's as simple as that. If you are going to serve Italian food, my personal favoriate, you have to serve things in season because the simple preparations will highlight all the problems with your ingredients. Restauranteurs should note Il Bagatto's success though -- this place is always packed because their prices are reasonable and the ambience is good. It's a pleasant place to eat, I just don't happen to think the food is that great.
Can?t handle the crowds? – A series of unfortunate events describes a recent dinner at Il Bagatto (meaning magician in Italian). Our large party was there to celebrate a friend?s birthday; the restaurant selectively chosen for its reasonable prices and ease of seating a big group. Little did we know that hospitality is not part of Il Bagatto?s credo.
We spoke to the manger to see if he could help with the extensive wait and his response was, ?You should have the extra person buy a round of drinks for your group and then buy me a drink for having to deal with angry people later on who want your table.? His outright rude demeanor and abrasive attitude did little to make us feel welcome, especially given that a large party would bring in a considerable amount of business. To avoid embarrassing our friend, we went downstairs rebuffed in our entreaty for help.
We waited for over an HOUR and then thought our table was finally ready ? but wait! Instead of offering us the table that had just vacated, the staff threw together a table in the corner next to the DJ and ? here?s the kicker ? they pulled out aluminum folding chairs to complete the set-up. I didn?t realize we were signing up for a friendly game of chess rather than a nice dinner. About 10 minutes later, a party of 9 was seated at the spacious table we thought was ours. Even though we ordered well before the group of 9 was seated, our entrees were served an hour and a half after we sat down. The party of 9 was served both appetizers and entrees before our table received any food. Maybe it was spite from the management; maybe they just can?t run a proper restaurant. Like pulling a rabbit out of a hat, the service was mysteriously absent until the check came, with an undeserved 20% gratuity tacked on. If you?re up for abysmal service, interminable waits, and mediocre food ? go to Il Bagatto. If you have any taste or common decency, you?ll wish this place would disappear!
BEST ITALIAN HOME MADE FOOD IN THE US – PROFESSIONALS, REALLY ITALIAN TASTE,EXCELLENT SERVICE,
THE BEST CALAMARI IN NY
MY FAVOURITE BY YEARS
Authentic Italian – This is real Italian food, ie. no sauce served atop overcooked pasta. Everything is fresh and tasty. I have never had a bad meal here. Just don't expect to sit early, or right away ("only the ugly people eat before 9"). Also, don't come with a group larger than six people; four is best. The staff is excellent, and the owner's brother imports all the wines from Italy - one of the best Italian wine lists in NY. Brunch is a great experience, as well.
Good Food/Service/Ambience – Everything about Il Bagatto is great. Just be sure to make a reservation. If you have to wait a bit no prob the bar tender down stairs is very friendly. An altogether GREAT place. 2 thumbs up. I'm a repeat visitor. Oh and it's not too pricey which is great. I never feel guilty when i leave.
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