37 W 17th St, New York, NY | Directions 1001140.738910 -73.994017
Neighborhoods: Flatiron District, Midtown
I just treated my GF and two clients to a very expensive meal at Basta Pasta. Although the food quality is fine, the portions are embarrassing. I ordered lamp chops for $26 and received (and this is not an exaggeration) two quarter-sized chops with ragged tin foil on the tips. Everyone at the table laughed uncomfortably when the dish was put in front of me. After I took a few bites, the server brought a bowl of hot water indicating -- with some hesitation -- that I could gnaw on the bones before cleaning my fingers. I was amazed. But the worst was how rudely we were treated -- not by the primary waiter, a sweet, diligent woman -- but by a captain, an obnoxious, bald man. After watching me sign a sizable bill (nearly $400 plus 20% tip), he loudly told us that our coats were waiting upfront. It was SO inappropriate and mean-spirited. Most importantly, it was completely uncalled for -- we were literally standing up and thanking our server. My GF was horrified, and my important guests embarrassed. He had watched us enjoying ourselves for two hours and seemed frustrated despite the fact that no one was waiting for a table, and we were more than supporting our stay with ample orders. I approached him afterward and told him he was a very rude man who didn't know how to behave. To this, he laughed. So fittingly unprofessional. None of us will return to this place which, in my experience, treats its customers with contempt -- a very bad quality in any service business.
Wonderful! – This place is really great! Reservations would be a good idea. The atmosphere is very modern, trendy, Asian. The staff is surprisingly nice. There is also a pretty large group of loyal customers, which I have always found to be a good recommendation for a place. The pumpkin gnocchi is fabulous! The lavender gelato would have been great without the odd jelly globs mixed in (unnecessary and distracting). Side note, my friend ordered the Cesar salad...it is an intact head of romaine lettuce with the ingredients of the salad separately situated on the plate...I would not have been pleased with this. I do not understand this new trend of serving unprepared salads. Isn't half of the point of going to a restaurant so that you don't have to do the prep work?
Not italian resturant!!! – Its not an italian resturant and its as expensive as the Hilton Hotel in time square resturant.
Italian Perfection – This place is unbelievable. Every single time! They make the simple classic dish of spaghetti into a masterpiece by tossing the pasta in a hollowed parmesan reggiano wheel, topped with prosciutto. The cheese coats every strand of spaghetti! The asparagus appetizer was cooked perfectly and pleased even the most anti-vegetable person at the table. What makes this Italian restaurant stand out from the rest, is the Japanese flare on some of the dishes!
Amazing! Simply amazing! – Where do I begin?
Service was great, very attentive without being over-bearing. The waiters are super-polite and helpful. The ambience is very nice and romantic. I would recommend reservations because this place does get filled up quickly. The food was, well small, especially for the price. But once you bite into it, you're willing to fork over twice as much. Fresh and delicious! The seafood pasta was done just right without being smothered in sauce, the mussels were some of the best I have ever tasted, and you can't beat the giant wheel of cheese that your pasta arrives in.
I wish I could eat here every day of the week because I doubt I'll ever get tired of it.
and now for something completely different... – You have to be a bit adventurous even to consider an Italian-Japanese fusion, but I'm Italian, and I like Japanese creations, so I gave it a try. I was not disappointed. The spaghetti with sea urchin sauce were delicious, and with a friend we tried different appetizers, all inventive, all good. And the pasta was really al dente.
BEST ITALIAN IN NYC!! – I would like to start with a bit about myself: I am a 40+ year old male, native New Yorker of Italian decent whos family has been in the restaurant/food business for over 90+ years and consider myself well traveled. I have been going to Basta Pasta weekly now for about 5 or so years and the food just gets better ever time. The casual dinning room is very reminiscent of an eatery in Milano or Bologna, where the showcase is the food. The food is everything but casual: the foie gras is exceptional, Chilean Sea Bass sublime, rib eye is always done to perfection, one of the BEST Caesar salads in town and lets not forget the pastas. Each and every one is unique never bland and full of depth, my favorite is one with uni in a pink sauce over spaghetti, YUM!!!!! The chef has the foresight to rotate many ingredients of the dishes so there is always a pleasant surprise to your favorites. You will NOT get bored with his menu. I have also ALL WAYS found that these masterpieces on a plate to be delivered by a staff of well trained servers that are eager to please. I have never had to wait for a cocktail, pepper or more cheese. At times I may have to wait for a table to become available but with the expertise of the bartender it's never too much to ask. He makes an awesome Negroni! I LOVE this place and am going back tomorrow night which will make it the second time this week!
Sarcastic and rude comments from a manager! – We were a party of four, but two of them came in late, by 20 - 30 min., I understand that the manager must rotate tables and need to accommodate later reservations, but he made a couple of nasty and sarcastic comments! It was totally un-necessary! I worked in a restaurant business for over 7 years, so I know how stressful it is, and I was a manager once, but I never made that kind of rude comments to my customers! Although food is good, his comments made a bad taste in our mouth. Specially, those were friends from Paris, so it was a special reunion dinner...!
memorably bad service – You really can tell how good / bad a service is when something goes wrong... My friend (who had the same dish before) took one bite of his clam pasta and stopped, saying the clams were bad, pungent odor right up his nose. But when he gave the plate back to the waitress explaining about the clams - her response was 'having not eaten this, I cannot say anything, but I'll check with the kitchen.' After a minute she returned with the same plate, placed it in front of my friend and said, 'There's nothing wrong with it'. Of course he refused to take it back. When she asked 'would you like something else?' - he was so upset he just said no. Did they do anything about this? Nothing. An empty plate arrived in front of him as if to suggest sharing the rest of the food with us. When the bill arrived the clam pasta was still included. We called the manager, who knew nothing of the incident....he agreed to take it off the bill, but did nothing more. Come to think of it he was rather stubborn about it -- all he said was that he gets fresh clams every day. I had always associated Japanese with good service, so this was a huge disappointment.
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