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Friday Foodie: Ristorante Il Melograno


Restaurant: Il Melograno

Cuisine: Italian

Great for: Small groups and couples, dinner before seeing a Broadway show

Location: 501 W. 51st St. New York, NY 10019

Phone #: (212) 757- 9290

Price Range: $15-$20, most expensive dishes up to $25


I ate at Il Melograno with my dad, who was in the city over the weekend for work. Before meeting up with him, I scouted out New York City restaurants online, searching for Italian food in particular because that is my dad’s favorite (he likes to claim he can just sniff out good pasta from a mile away, but I prefer a bit more of a researched approach than that).

I think it’s generally pretty hard for a restaurant to mess up Italian food so badly that it doesn’t taste good; at the same time I think it’s hard to make really great Italian food—like, this-tastes-homemade great. The chef at Il Melograno opened his first restaurant in Italy, so I feel like it’s safe to say he knows what he’s doing. I ordered the Gnocchi alla Sorrentina and loved it. The portions were a little smaller than what I usually see in most Italian restaurants, but this wasn’t a problem for me because the pasta was filling. Both my dad and I managed to squeeze in some dessert as well, and thank goodness we did. I got tiramisu and he had chocolate gelato (after he picked up the decorative leaf on top, asked, “What’s this?” and popped it in his mouth before I could answer. Oh, Dad). I left the restaurant feeling absolutely stuffed and not regretting it one bit.


Just an FYI: Il Melograno is fairly small, and though we were seated right away, the tables themselves are small and close to one another. This restaurant is best saved for an outing with just a few people; large groups may be cramped and uncomfortable. Then again, you could be so busy enjoying your food that you don’t even care.


Follow my column every other Friday for great places to eat in the NYC/Long Island area!

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