August 2019. two months after moving from Cara Mia Trattoria's 653 Ninth Ave., Manhattan venue, they occupied for 22 years, Billy, their Maitre'D, pleasantly invited me inside, before I walked passed their new 697 Ninth Ave, premises. Seated at one of their table's pristine white tablecloths with fine dinner-ware, their serene vivacious ambiance includes Italian art and yesteryear's pop culture's black and white photos of famous Italian stars, plus four consecutive-annual Best Restaurant Awards, adorning its walls.
Cara Mia's fine Italian wine, paired well with their succulent homemade Crocchette Di Granchio's warm crab cakes, corn and avocado appetizers and Pratoli Ripieni's stuffed mushrooms with pancetta, mozzarella and red peppers. This best kept NYC Italian dining secret, with fresh healthy $9.95 lunches and pre-fix meals starting at $19.95, includes appetizers, despite my misconception that their pricey dinners start at $30.
Inevitably, divine mysticism enabled Billy to invite me, an ideal diner who'd soon treat family, colleagues or whomever, like a VIP, affordably, like thousands of tourists and locals raving about Cara Mia's jewel venue, six blocks from NYs Port Authority and Times Sq, in Cllinton-Hill/Hell's Kitchen's Manhattan residential/cultural/ commercial zone.
Mr. Besin, Cara Mia's owner's success includes their Maria Pia's West 51st Street, Intermezzo's 623 Ninth Avenue and his downtown Limon Jungle, Gallo Nero and Taqueria restaurants.
By Irma Tyus-Mitchell
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.