A pre-holiday lunch with a few friends, none of which (including me) had been to A Voce although we had been wanting to for a while. I wasn't overly impressed with the decor - a huge mural painted in bright primary colors in the entry to the restaurant itself did not fit it at all with the brown motif throughout the rest of the space. I'm not sure if the designer was trying for modern or industrial chic or what exactly, and although the seats were very comfortable and the view of Central Park was wonderful, the restaurant space as a whole didn't work for me. And that was the only negative of the afternoon.
The service was perfection - engaged, knowledgable waitress; helpful sommellier; courses served and cleared with virtually no interruption. Although a price fixed lunch menu is available ($33 for 3 courses) we all went ala carte. We all had a lot of questions of the waitress prior to ordering and she steered all of us in the right direction. I started with roasted trumpet royal mushrooms which were beyond good, followed by olive oil poached salt cod. When the cod was served my initial thought was "what a small portion" but it turned out to be more than adequate (and that includes sharing a few bites with my companions) and, more importantly, amazingly tasty. I also had a few bites of companions' various pastas and they were all mouth-watering. We ended up with several shared desserts. One of my friends probably summed it up best - "This is like have a mouth orgasm!". The bombolini with bittersweet chocolate and the espresso mousse were my 2 favorites. The topper was the marshmallow with lemon that we each got at the end - unbelievable. We raved so much that the waitress gave us a box of about 12-14 to take with us. It wasn't a cheap lunch - $300 for 4 of us before tip - but worth every cent.