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Posted by bpc-samir on 08/17/2005
This is a solid family style restaurant. Biggest portion of food i have ever had. 2 entrees will easily feed 3 people and then some. Prices are incredibly reasonable considering quantity. The food is really really good. I had the olive oil and garlic pasta and another marinara based pasta, Both dishes were amazing and provided a good contrast. Will definitely go back again
Posted by Anonymous on 06/24/2005
I have gone here a few times and loved it. Def. recommend this place w/ a small or large party.
Posted by Ivett on 02/18/2005
I went to Sambuca's for the first time for a birthday dinner party and there were 13 of us. We ordered 5 dishes of food and a big salad for all of us. It was delicious, fun, and no one could get over the amount of food that was served. There was so much food left over even after we all stuffed our face. The waiters were attentive and friendly. Wonderful place for italian food and even a better place for family. The only thing I will say is that it could have been a bit more quiet.
Posted by Suprised! on 01/21/2005
I haven't been to Sambuca for a year or so. I recently visited with some friends from out of town. I was really impressed by how much the food quality has improved. We had 2 pasta dishes...Penne w/ Broccoli Rabe and Shrimp and the Linguini and White Clam Sauce were killer. We had a dish they called "Tuscan Chicken" which was a whole roasted chicken in a balsamic vinagar sauce. Wow. My wife ordered the chicken paillard which was a super thin chicken breast covered with arrugula and tomatoes. It was light and healthy. I forgot to mention the baked clams and the calimari were the best I ever had. Great Job!
Posted by Anonymous on 01/17/2005
I have been going to this restaurant for a long time as we liked the food the atmosphere and thought it was good value. I downloaded a coupon for this restaurant. The first time in all the years I have been going there, that I used this coupon. First off, it was not crowded at all. They refused to sit us even when they heard one of our party members call to let us know she was just down the street from us. When you use the coupon, you have to present it up front which I did. I thought the waiter took no interest in us. Water glasses were not filled on a regular basis, etc. When the bill came, I asked about the fact that they charged the tip and his tone was very surly stating that "that is what is stated on the coupon." I thought the clincher was when the hostess then came up and asked if we ordered more food than I had originally asked for -in front of all my guests!. (She had originally told me that she did not think I ordered enough food for our party). My guests were a little taken aback at this and looked questioningly at me. I know her intentions were not that of a gracious host and as a result, I am no longer going to be a customer of theirs.
Posted by The Stomach on 12/06/2004
I went to Sambuca with a party of six after we decided to avoid the hustle and bustle of Carmine's uptown. I think everybody was pleasantly surprised with the food at Sambuca. The atmosphere was interesting and modern, certainly not boring or cafeteria style as others have said. The only problem was that the the restaurant was a little noisy and crowded, but I guess that's to be expected on a Friday night. For an appetizer we started with the Eggplant Rollatini and the special salad for the evening. The Rollatini was tasty, nothing amazing but certainly better than average. The special salad was also very good. The crisp pancetta was just right and the goat cheese in it was excellent (very creamy). For main dishes the six of us split a Veal Marsala, Shrimp Parm, and Fusilli w/Vodka Sauce. Everything was tasty and the portions were large enough to satisfy everyone's appetite. The shrimp in the parm were bountiful and covered with enough cheese and sauce. The marsala was flavorful and the mushrooms were also big and abundant. The fusilli and vodka was also excellent, and while most wouldn't order the fusilli I reccomend it because they soak up the sauce well and are fun to eat. For dessert we split the chocolate truffle cake and the family sized brownie dessert. Both of them were excellent. The chocolate truffle cake might be a bit much for those with less than a huge sweet tooth. Overall the food left nothing to be desired and everyone was full. While a bit pricey in general it wasn't terrible for family portion Italian on a Friday night.
Posted by Craig on 11/05/2004
I've been eating here since the late 1980s. Don't listen to the snobs, the food is perfectly fine. The prices are reasonable and, amazingly, they don't mark up the price of a bottle of wine 300% either. Italian food isn't supposed to be complex or trendy. It's supposed to be simple, inexpensive, tasty, fun, and satisfying, and that's why the world has fallen in love with that particular cuisine. This place hasn't changed (except the prices of course) since the late 80s, but in a good sense. The recipes are pretty much the same, as is the decor. It's a big restaurant so you almost never have to wait long for a table, even when it's busy, which is pretty much all the time. The service is always good, and the wait staff is young and professional, with the right amount of attentiveness. Bathrooms are always immaculate. Ignore the negative reviews and just give the place a try. Decades of Upper West Siders can't be wrong.