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“Fantastic and vibrant restaurant” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Puglia Restaurant

Puglia Restaurant
189 Hester St, New York City, NY 10013-4776 (Little Italy)
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Ranked #2,722 of 12,022 Restaurants in New York City
Price range: $0 - $40
Cuisines: Italian, Pizza
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Neighborhood: Little Italy
Description: n 1919 Gregorio Garofalo came over from Italy to begin his American dream... He rented a basement, put in his coal stoves, and sprinkled saw dust on the floor. With his knowledge of creating homemade wines, and his passion for cooking, Gregorio's dream began.... The name ..."Puglia" is a region in Southern Italy from which he immigrated. People came from far to indulge in the delicacies Gregorio prepared; Capuzzello (sheepshead), Tripe (the lining of the stomach of a young ox), and Pasta E Fagioli (pasta and beans), but what they loved the most was the way he treated everyone like his own family. Today with his 3rd generation carrying on the recipes and the values he taught them, Gregorio is smiling.... All of us at Puglia thank you for making Gregorio's dream a reality. Buona Sera
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
“Fantastic and vibrant restaurant”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2013

As a Brit in NY you couldn't ask for more than being taken to a restaurant in Little Italy by a born and bred Italian-American. And Puglia was absolutely superb, from the home made wine to the live music and general atmosphere. The tables are a bit basic and you may have to share with another party but that just adds to the entertainment of the evening.

I had the Rigatoni Al Vodka and it was fabulous.

A great evening and so inexpensive. If you like Italian food and are in NY then this is a must.

Visited July 2013
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153 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Gainesville, florida
Top Contributor
163 reviews 163 reviews
77 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
90 helpful votes 90 helpful votes
“Fun historic Family style Italian restaurant in Little Italy”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2013

Took a group of about 40 to this restaurant and arrived to find that they had an additional group of about 130 scheduled to be there at the same time. This would be fine if they hadn't tried to pack us in like sardines to eat. After a bit of conversation, they did allow a few of us to sit at a different table across the room so we could spread out a tiny bit.

The food was really good and the portions were decent. It really is a fun place with love Italian music that he gets the restaurant involved in complete with standing on chairs and twirling the white napkin. Prices were reasonable too. Fun place to eat at least once.

Visited January 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
30 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
58 helpful votes 58 helpful votes
“Nice place on side street in Little Italy”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2013

We had a very nice dinner and good service at this family friendly place, just off the main drag in Little Italy. Great menu along with singing and entertainment - got the whole place singing and waving their napkins! Great bread is served but try the garlic bread also. Shrimp Scampi and traditional spaghetti and meatballs were good also. Pizza is a must at this place - crust is wonderful.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Atlanta, Georgia, United States
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“We needed REAL Italian and got REAL Italian”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2013

Living in Atlanta, there aren't many authentic Italian restaurants. Probably the closest to authentic is Il Localino located in Inman Park and this little gem is owned by native Italian/New Yorkers.

So you can only imagine how much I was starving for an authentic Italian meal and once arriving in Grand Central, I immediately headed to Little Italy.

From a geographical standpoint, Little Italy is so small compared to what it once was as Chinatown seems to be growing. However, the spirit, the atmosphere, the food, and the vitality are absolutely not lost. We stepped into Puglia because it seemed to have the most activity for an early dinner hour (5:30). Though the decor was not overwhelming, the server's attention made us feel so welcome!

We started with the caprese and bruschetta. By far, hands down, the BEST that I have ever had in the northeast. I have no idea how they make their bruschetta, but all I can say is that it is a VERY good thing that I don't live too near there because it would soon become an addiction. Many Italian restaurants prepare the bread to a cracker consistency, but this was a warm and delectable slice of heaven on earth. The tomatoes did not have too much balsamic (another fault of Italian restaurants) so the freshness of the tomatoes really came through. We enjoyed the caprese as well, with the most tender mozzarella topped with arugula and roasted peppers, but by far, hands down, the bruschetta won for "table favorite" for the night. We could have clearly doubled the order, made a meal out of that, added a salad and called it fantastico.

One of our guests had the brick oven pizza. Again, eating pizza in the south is a disappointment for anyone who grew up in New York City. I'm not sure if it's the water, or what, but we just can get that OMG crust that New Yorkers are famous for. Needless to say, the margherita pizza was devoured in less than ten minutes. The other two dishes we ordered were the linguine with red clam sauce and wheat pasta primavera with a side of sausage. The linguine was out of this world, particularly because the clams were tender and perfectly cooked and NOT oversalted! I cannot tell you how many times I have ordered this dish only to be disappointed by the level of saltiness or overcooked clams. Not so here! Perfect in every way!!! And we were not disappointed with the penne either! Primavera can often be the ugly red-headed stepchild and clearly this was not. We sent NOTHING back - the plates were clean - and it was an extraordinary evening. The only bummer is that I left my Wicked souvenir on the table and didn't realize it until we were back in our hotel over two hours away!

There are lots of wonderful Italian restaurants in Italy that you could enjoy. And I have no doubt that they are wonderful, exciting, and a delight for the palate and the evening. However, I am so thankful that we landed at Puglia and had an opportunity to savor the most amazing and authentic Italian food.

  • Visited June 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Round Rock, Texas
Top Contributor
107 reviews 107 reviews
66 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
49 helpful votes 49 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 27, 2013

The food is average and plentiful. Bring an appetite. Served family style and don't skip the garlic bread!! Best part of the meal is the cheezy entertainment from an older gentleman with an organ. Everyone was up on a chair waving their napkins and laughing.

Visited June 2013
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