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1578 First Ave., 82nd East, New York City, NY 10028
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Ranked #1,176 of 11,687 Restaurants in New York City
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Price range: $15 - $50
Mon - Thu 5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Fri - Sun 11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Cuisines: Seafood
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations, Private Dining
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: 82nd East Street
Transit: 4,5, 6 trains @ 86th Street & Lexington
Description: Il Tesoro There are nearly twenty thousand restaurants serving food in New York City. But at IL Tesoro Ristorante & Bar at 1578 First Avenue on Manhattan’s upper east side, owner and chef AJ Black isn’t just serving food... he’s creating art. You might even say Black was born with a culinary flair in his blood. Born in Italy, Black got his first taste of the restaurant business on his grandfather’s hip at the tender age of seven years old. Even then, AJ recalls, “I loved it. I saw things he was doing and I was always thinking of ways to do it better.”That passion lead him to the Italian Culinary Institute. From there Black went on to work as a sous chef at the Grand Hotel in Rome before spending time in France learning from some of the great chefs of the era. The results of that unique background have been evident in every undertaking of Black’s impressive career. IL Tesoro on Florida’s Sanibel Island, IL Tesoro at the Terrace on Martha’s Vineyard, and Villa Pazzo in the West Village, on Bleeker Street.But IL Tesoro on the corner of 82nd street and First Avenue is truly this imaginative chef’s crowning achievement. With the help of his wife Jolie, a multi media artist and designer, the couple have joined forces to renovate the 3,500 square foot restaurant. A more airy, etherial feel greets you when you walk inside with mirrors and ambient lighting creating the perfect feel for the experience. Outdoor seating has been added for dining al fresco. But we digress... IL Tesoro is, after all, about the food. And this is where AJ Black has hit his stride. Italian staples are always available along with meats and organic and gluten free pastas. Add an extensive wine list to pair with your meal and you have the perfect fusion of atmosphere and culinary delight. The culmination of a life long quest for AJ Black. The quest for the perfect dining experience. “When you come to my restaurant, I’m not just serving a meal. I’m inviting you to my kitchen. Whatever kind of day you had, I want you to forget it and get lost in the pleasure of a special meal I cook just for you.” Il Tesoro. Treat yourself. Because everyone deserves to get lost, if only for one evening, in sheer pleasure.
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39 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Toronto, Canada
11 reviews 11 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 18, 2014

Used a Groupon voucher to dine @ Il Tesoro. Money well spent! Delicious food, great wine selection, and excellent service from staff. All the waiters were very lovely and helpful. The food itself was amazing, and I found the portions huge! Would definitely visit again.

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19 reviews 19 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 14, 2014

Three friends and I dined here for a birthday celebration last week. The food was delicious. The meals we had included salmon, lamb shank, veal Milanese, and pasta with shrimp scampi. We all agreed that what we ordered was beautifully prepared. Our waiter was very pleasant and attentive, but the sommelier was a bit pretentious. I used a groupon which... More

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New York
Senior Contributor
49 reviews 49 reviews
29 restaurant reviews
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2014

I have had several excellent meals here. The service is excellent, the food delicious! Seating is comfortable. Can get noisy but still cozy and attractive.

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Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
27 restaurant reviews
80 helpful votes 80 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2014

Dinner on Friday October 10, 2014. SERVICE: Impeccable! ... Water glasses NEVER hit empty. Courteous, polite professional. The Wait staff worked wonderfully together, supporting and assisting one another. AMBIANCE: Soothing, romantic, intimate. CLEANLINESS: ... Spotless!!!!! FOOD: Quality, EXCELLENT! ... Fried calamari appetizer cooked to perfection. Tender not, rubbery (Not on the menu as a stand-alone. You have to ask for... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Tucson, Arizona, United States
4 reviews 4 reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 1, 2014

Loved it. And they offer gluten free options. The deserts were also fabulous. The wait staff was very friendly. There was an old world feel.

Was this review helpful? Yes 3
Brooklyn, New York
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 26, 2014

The food was very good. I had the Marsala dinner yum! And the creme brûlée. I went with a Groupon which was gladly honored. I don't like the bottle of wine thing on the table they like to push on you I respectfully declined and got the wine I wanted. The server was very nice and not pushy and very... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Biloxi, Mississippi
Top Contributor
164 reviews 164 reviews
88 restaurant reviews
95 helpful votes 95 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2014

Went with a Groupon coupon that cost $17 for $40 worth of food & drinks. Wasn't expecting much. I was WRONG. This is a very, very good Italian restaurant on 1st Avenue. Easy to get to by Metro bus and a short easy walk. Excellent service. Strong generous cocktails. Good wines. The sweetbreads app. was perfectly prepared. Fair prices by... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Top Contributor
131 reviews 131 reviews
105 restaurant reviews
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed May 20, 2014

Can't believe all the good reviews I'm reading about this restaurant. Was not impressed by the service or the food. Maybe it was because of the discount coupon from Living Social? I paid $40.00 for $80.00 worth of food. The coupon had to be presented as soon as I sat down. Right from the start, my friend and I were... More

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Skokie, Illinois
Top Contributor
152 reviews 152 reviews
102 restaurant reviews
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2014

Long wait for table was helped by being comped on drinks. Food was very good when we got to a table. Service was fine. A bit pricey, but not outrageous.

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
3 reviews 3 reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 10, 2014

Food and service all were exceptional. My wife and I very happy that we found this restaurant. Highly recommend.

Was this review helpful? Yes 10

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Additional Information about Il Tesoro

Address: 1578 First Ave., 82nd East, New York City, NY 10028
Phone Number: 2128619620
Location: United States  >  New York (NY)  >  New York City
Open Hours:
Sunday 11:00 am - 10:00 pm
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 11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Saturday 11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Average Prices: USD 15 - 50
Cuisine: Seafood

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