A NYC hotspot that’s easy on the wallet? Yes, such a thing exists. Gemma, connected to the stylish Bowery Hotel, is an indoor/outdoor Italian trattoria that draws crowds and celebrities on a daily basis. The lively atmosphere and rustic ambiance makes the perfect setting for pretty much any type of date.
Gemma’s indoor dining space is illuminated by thick wrought iron chandeliers and antique candelabras draped in wax icicles, which take you back to the days of Old New York (or perhaps the late 1960s). Mismatched wooden furniture and aligned empty wine bottles give off a vibe that’s casual yet chic.
With an array of antipastis, wood-fired pizzas, pastas and fish & meat entrees, Gemma dishes out country Italian fare that’s consistently fresh and consistently delicious. There are so many savory options to choose from, so sharing is definitely the way to go, no matter the party size. Our personal faves: Burrata Caprese, Strozzapreti (a long pasta, similar to cavatelli, served in a spicy Italian sausage sauce), Penne alla Norma, the Branzino, and really any of the pizzas.
Gemma draws the young fashionable types, especially during the later leg of the dinner rush, but do not be mistaken – this buzzing Bowery restaurant is for anyone looking for good food and prices, shared in good company of course.
Nothing beats dining al fresco at Gemma. The outdoor space right on Bowery allows for plenty of people watching (and celebrity spotting), so soak it all in over some Italian wine and family-style plates. Speaking of wine, Gemma rents out its wine room for private parties of 40 and under – the friendly and accommodating service are sure to ease your party planning nerves.
Antipastis & salads from $6-15; Pizzas & pastas from $13-18; Entrees from $15-29.
April 5, 2012