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“This is quality”
Review of Esca

Esca
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Ranked #2,447 of 14,522 Restaurants in New York City
Price range: $35 - $80
Cuisines: Italian, Seafood
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Lunch, Outdoor Seating, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Neighborhood: Midtown
Cross street: 9th Avenue
Transit: Subway to 42nd Street - Times Square
Reviewed September 6, 2013 via mobile

Quality food, good service, nice presentation - upscale and great for client meetings

Fish lovers will enjoy, and vegetarians too.

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1  Thank Valux01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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459 - 463 of 781 reviews

Reviewed August 31, 2013

Here are the salient bits.

It's expensive--very expensive--which wouldn't be a problem if the place weren't so solidly average. "Welcome to Esca," says a man in an ill-fitting suit. Welcome, that is, to a profoundly unstylish and boring dining room with out-of-place music. Fine. How's the food? Decidedly mediocre. The famed crudo? Meh. And at $30.00 for six tiny pieces it should be more than meh. Grilled octopus? Again, fine, but I've had similar at middle-of-the-road tapas joints at half the cost.

"We're famous for the branzino." That's odd, because it's nothing special, and at over $70.00 for two people, it should probably be the tastiest branzino on earth. "Would you like dessert?" Yes, and an espresso for me and a cappuccino for her. I would, though, not like the espresso to come out first, followed by the dessert 5 minutes later, followed by the cappuccino 4 minutes after that. Kind of messes up the course, you know? But oh well.

And the sommelier? Who is this person? After completing her kindergarten checklist she recommends a bottle a full $20.00 more than the price ceiling ($90.00) she requested and I supplied. Her suit: also ill-fitting.

Bottom line: way too much money for a bland, mediocre, ordinary seafood place passing itself off as extraordinary for theatre-going out-of-towners. I thought Pasternack was some sort of fish whisperer? Methinks he long ago stopped paying attention to the goings-on at Esca.

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1  Thank Traveler1983_13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 28, 2013

6 of us came in for an early dinner after a Matinee.
5 of us had the Bronzino. Very nicely prepared.
1 of us had seafood and pasta. She loved it.
Heirloom tomato and another salad as starters. Very Nice
Martinis were warm.
Sat outside and service was good.
Food was like my review. Nothing to brag about!

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Thank 65AroundTheWorld
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 28, 2013

We have eaten at Esca a number of times since it opened and always have been impressed by the freshness, variety, and preparation of their fish. Last night was no different. The raw fish starters were great - a trio of snappers and hamachi - followed by moonfish perfectly poached in olive oil and an astonishing pasta with crabmeat and a sea urchin sauce. The amuse-bouche was a terrific bean crostini and a dish of olives, bread was served with wonderful olive oil. Wine by the glass seems expensive but it is served in 1/4 liters which makes it ordinary restaurant overcharge. There is music and lively acoustic but the level is manageable. (We always wish there were no music.) Service was professional although we had a long wait to get our menus. It is not inexpensive but it's a restaurant we feel is worth spending on.

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Thank john w
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 21, 2013

If you want to be taking for a beautiful culinary voyage, I would recommend the tasting menu at Esca. This two hour dinning experience is something I will remember for a very long time.

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1  Thank mdehaan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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