By: John Keiffer
We all know that daunting stat: If you were to eat your way through every one of New York’s 23,000 restaurants, you'd need over 22 years. The Big Apple, buzzing with life, is bound to have a multitude of dining spots, but finding the crème de la crème in New York is a task for a lifetime - and an enormous appetite. In fact, the city boasts a remarkable 69 Michelin stars, split among four three-star, 12 two-star, and 53 one-star establishments.
With so many of the planet’s most talented chefs within one concrete jungle, choosing where to dine can be as tricky as snagging a table. We're always on the lookout for new culinary stars, yet we often find ourselves revisiting the classics, too. We stay updated so you know precisely which eateries are must-visits right now. That leads us to the most common question our editors face: Where's the hot dining spot at the moment? Well, there's one place that both tourists and New Yorkers shouldn't skip.
Our Food critic found lots to love at Gigino Trattoria, and so have our other team members.
If braving a two-hour queue in winter chills for a meal seems daunting, then Gigino Trattoria might just be your escape. In a Manhattan neighborhood famous for its culinary showdowns, Gigino Trattoria is the restaurant that pulls out all of the stops. It serves simple-sounding dishes that are a joy to eat. More than just a trattoria, this sit-down spot also offers a la carte bites at the bar. While the kitchen puts a creative spin on Italian classics, remember to save room for their exceptional desserts.
Chances are, you've heard of Gigino Trattoria. Filmmaker and proprietor Bob Giraldi shot his feature "Dinner Rush" starring Danny Aiello and Sandra Bernhard right on the premises. Released in 2001, the movie intertwines stories of fate and passion with gastronomic artistry, continuing to captivate audiences. Hailed by Roger Ebert as one of the "Top 100 Films in the Past 10 Years" and lauded by The New York Times' Elvis Mitchell as "A Menu of Plot and Intrigue Where Food Is Just a Show," it's now available for streaming on Apple TV.
Bob Giraldi isn't just any film and commercial director. From helming Michael Jackson's "Beat It" to Lionel Richie's "Hello," and from the vibrant "Say Say Say" with Jackson and McCartney to Pat Benatar's "Love is a Battlefield," he's crafted a distinguished career. A pioneer among the original "Mad Men" of the 70s advertising revolution, Giraldi made his mark at the legendary Y&R Ad Agency. Departing from DellaFemina & Partners in 1970, he embarked on a remarkable journey directing successful TV commercials, securing every major accolade in the field and earning recognition as one of "101 Stars Behind 100 Years of Advertising.” Always eager for new ventures, Giraldi dived into the New York food scene, opening Jean Georges Vongerichten's eponymous NY Times 4-star restaurant, the 3-star 'Mercer Kitchen,' and the pioneering 'Jo Jo' & 'Vong' in NY, along with outposts in London and Hong Kong. His 'BREADTribeca' garnered two stars from The New York Times, and his 'Diablo Royale' was a hit taqueria among West Village's youth.
Check out his latest short film, “Gigino Trattoria / 2024 Fashion Collection" here https://youtu.be/c_Pgc1hxMGs
Gigino Trattoria has remained a classic Italian favorite in Tribeca for over 30 years. In fact, this year is its anniversary, which is why we returned to check it out. Trust us, it did not disappoint.
As the weather turns and we swap ceiling fans for sweaters and jackets, warm drinks, hearty pasta, and filling soups feel pretty idyllic. With a new winter menu for 2024, Gigino Trattoria’s serves a variety of homemade specials that stop time. These include Casoncelli, unique in shape and generously stuffed with speck it's enveloped in a velvety butter and soft cheese sauce. Tortellini in Brodo offers a delightful twist, featuring artisanal raviolini immersed in a flavorful chicken consommé. For a heartier option, Chef Luigi's Carciofi Ripieni presents artichokes filled with a savory blend of sausage, potatoes, and peas. The menu also includes Polenta con Salsiccia e Funghi, where soft polenta meets sautéed mushrooms and sausage in a light tomato sauce. Adding to the selection, Cavotelli Zucca e Pancetta pairs cavatelli with butternut squash, pancetta, and parsley for a balanced mix of flavors. Lastly, Penne con Zucca combines penne pasta with pumpkin, garlic, olive oil, and spinach, creating a dish that's both nourishing and indulgent.
Get ready for instant fuzzy feels where you can whisper, woo, and be waited on.
For reservations, visit https://www.gigino-trattoria.com