Seafood Restaurant and Italian Restaurant$$$$
Hell's Kitchen, New York
  • Has a stamp of approval from The Corcoran Group and Eater
    • The Corcoran Group
    • Eater
  • Giulia P.
    "The flights of crudo are great and the grilled octopus is glorious."(26 Tips)
    "The salt crusted Branzino for two is a must have!"(9 Tips)
    Food & Wine
    "support Chef Mario Batali’s charity Mario Batali Foundation"(5 Tips)
    "Spaghetti Neri: amazing!"(3 Tips)
108 Tips and reviews
  • seafood
  • mario batali
  • branzino
  • tasting menu
  • spaghetti neri
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  • Popular
  • Recent
  • Duke P.
    Duke PerkinsAugust 23, 2015
    The food is really on point and the staff and feel of the location have an elevated feeling. The tasting menu to go with the courses are the way to go. Fish fish fish!
  • Mansha C.
    Mansha ChughSeptember 7, 2015
    The shrimp appetizer is heaven..not to mention the amazing blueberry turn over cake with sea salt gelato is so delicious!! A beautiful anniversary treat.
  • The Corcoran Group
    The Corcoran GroupOctober 26, 2010
    Come here for a superb pre-theater dinner. Start with the Crudo Tasting followed by the Spaghetti Neri. Or go all out and get the Tasting Menu with the Extra Crudo.
  • IWalked Audio Tours
    IWalked Audio ToursSeptember 24, 2011
    #8 - IWalked NYC's Top 10 Italian Restaurants. Esca (translated from Italian is “bait") is perfect choice for pre-theatre dinner. Try one of numerous seafood specialties or Southern Italy dishes<LINK> Read more
  • Duarte E.
    Duarte EspindolaSeptember 30, 2015
    I had the Crudo tasting which was interesting but not impressive. The corn salad with walnuts and goat cheese was a great surprise! Service is excellent.
  • Alice Eunjin
    Alice EunjinApril 28, 2015
    "fresh and varied crudo, pasta like the briny, creamy maccheroni alla chitarra with sea urchin and crabmeat, and main attractions like the salt baked cod "
  • John S.
    John SchwartzDecember 5, 2013
    Do not miss this for lunch -- even the bread is amazing. The chitarra is superb and we had perhaps the best fatty toro ceviche ever.
  • Eater
    EaterSeptember 18, 2010
    In many ways Esca is as good as the four-starred Le Bernardin. If nothing else, it's cheaper, more relaxed and, bonus, also serves Baltali-brand pasta. [Eater 38 Member] Read more
  • Lana C.
    Lana ChanOctober 16, 2012
    Try the Crudo flight, daily selection of fresh raw seafood. The sea urchin is fantastic
  • Approach Guides
    Approach GuidesAugust 9, 2010
    A perfect match for Esca’s cuisine…Ferrando’s Erbaluce di Caluso (Northwest). The Erbaluce grape variety delivers good acidity, flavors of apple and a distinctive minerality. Salute!
  • Courtney R.
    Courtney R.April 27, 2013
    This is legitimately the best gnocchi I have ever had in my entire life. Better than the food I ate in Italy.
  • Food Network
    Food NetworkJanuary 18, 2011
    Esca, Mario Batali's southern Italian trattoria, serves the freshest seafood dishes, like Zuppa Di Pesce, Branzino Per Due, in New York City's theatre district.
  • albert s.
    albert suhFebruary 6, 2013
    Spaghetti with lobster was very salty. The sea urchin crudo was awesome and maccheroni alla chittara was delicious!
  • Food Network
    Food NetworkAugust 8, 2011
    Esca, Mario Batali's southern Italian trattoria, serves the freshest seafood dishes, like Zuppa Di Pesce, Branzino Per Due, in New York City's theatre district. Find more tips at FN Local. Read more
  • Estefanía G.
    Amazing food! Perfect service!!! Patricia Diez is the best waitress ever!!! Definitely a place to remember :)
  • Bob M.
    Bob MorrisonNovember 13, 2011
    Gotta try the Crudo! Something Specail! And do not overlook the pasta course. Black Bass for two was incredible!
  • Christopher H.
    Christopher HNovember 27, 2013
    Lunch Crudo tasting is excellent. And the seafood stew is an unbelievable portion of seafood.
  • Kirsten P.
    Kirsten PeisselOctober 14, 2015
    Grilled octopus appetizer, delicious and a satisfying portion for a shared starter.
  • Marianna
    MariannaOctober 17, 2013
    Share the seasonal pumpkin gnocchi with someone for a fabulous dessert! Better than pie :)
  • Giulia P.
    Giulia PratiJuly 3, 2015
    This place is amazing. The flights of crudo are great and the grilled octopus is glorious.
  • @JaumePrimero
    @JaumePrimeroAugust 13, 2011
    Spaghetti Neri: amazing! Also, I had a pasta special once with tuna meatballs. It was off the hook!
  • Ryan A.
    Ryan AbramowJuly 3, 2012
    The crudo (we had tuna) and branzino were spot on! So delicious and must try!
  • Joanne M.
    Joanne MillsJanuary 14, 2012
    I recommend the Tasting Menu ... what a fabulous array of seafood, paired with fantastic wines.
  • JD
    JDSeptember 10
    Save room for desert! Great service and food is always fresh tasting.
  • Scott C.
    Scott CrosbyJanuary 6, 2010
    Every fish served is connected directly to a fisherman known by name. The wait staff is knowledgeable and the food lovely. Enjoy the Crudo and Thresher Shark if you can get it. Read more
  • Tony R.
    Tony RNovember 9, 2014
    Really loved the Skate. Excellent wine selection s and recommendations too..
  • Adrian N.
    Adrian NoriegaJuly 6, 2012
    Ignore the allure of the $16 glass of wine, and get a bottle....The Branzino is amazing!
  • Maurio F.
    Maurio FioreAugust 15, 2014
    Awesome crudo but schedule a few hours for this lunch, it takes a while.
  • nymag
    nymagJuly 2, 2010
    Food & Wine editor Dana Cowin raved to us in her New York Diet about the fior di latte with berries here: “Oh my gosh, it was a beautiful way to end the meal.” Read more
  • 8PM R.
    8PM ReservationMarch 4, 2012
    I could eat here everyday. I'm passionate about seafood and it doesn't get any fresher than it does here.
  • Joe Bastianich
    Joe BastianichMay 2, 2012
    Chef Dave Pasternak is known as "the fish whisperer" and his squid ink pasta is a can't miss.
  • Mitchell P.
    Mitchell PressmanJuly 3, 2013
    Crudo, and trust your server to recommend the best choice.
  • Jon B.
    Jon B.November 27, 2016
    Did the tasting menu. Two of the courses unfortunately lacked the sort of depth of flavors that I have come to expect from a top restaurant
  • Food & Wine
    Food & WineJanuary 11, 2012
    Help support Chef Mario Batali’s charity Mario Batali Foundation through FOOD & WINE’s “Chefs Make Change” program! Click to donate
  • eme
    emeFebruary 4, 2015
    Go for the linguine and clams. Atmosphere too casual/relaxed for me.
  • Glory K.
    Glory KadiganMarch 4, 2016
    Crudo salmon wine - excellent
  • Brynn S.
    Brynn ShepherdOctober 2, 2012
    Expensive but crazy delicious seafood. Great for special occasions.
  • Eric W.
    Eric WaltonJuly 5, 2013
    Very solid menu. The burrata with caviar is fantastic.
  • Village Voice
    Village VoiceDecember 12, 2013
    Look out for whole fish specials; you'll never be disappointed.
  • Alex H.
    Alex HurstJuly 24, 2015
    Not a lot of upscale dining options in the west 40s. This is always a winner.
  • Serious Eats
    Serious EatsMarch 5, 2013
    This is our go-to place for seafood.
  • Shane S.
    Shane SteeleApril 29, 2010
    Branzino is a must. Pasta Chittara with crab and sea urchin is over the top. And don't miss the side of fennel
  • Chris M.
    Chris MaliwatDecember 15, 2016
    Gnocchi - Grubstreet's #12 NYC dumpling
  • Joanie
    JoanieJanuary 26, 2013
    The crudo double flight features really unique looking and tasting items.
  • ZenFoodster
    ZenFoodsterSeptember 11
    We asked to move to another table after enduring (for 20 min) noisiest group in whole place-businessman w/ their raunchy "girlfriends"+ our waiter wouldn't ask them to quiet down. Not worth the $$$!
  • 8PM R.
    8PM ReservationJuly 12, 2012
    Hands down the one of the best crudo in the city.
  • John B.
    John BigbooteJanuary 29, 2014
    better than average italian seafood. nothing exceptional except the capachino caramel gelato
  • Maritza S.
    Maritza SanchezSeptember 28, 2014
    Great service, nice wines, amazing Bronzinie
  • Tucker A.
    Was there for an event, so the food was all cocktail hour style, good though.
  • peter d.
    peter dunnAugust 13, 2016
    The sashimi like opening dish of 3 or 4
  • Melissa
    MelissaAugust 7
    Gnocchi (Sheepsmilk with buffalo mozzarella, tomato)
  • Will A.
    Will ArnoneFebruary 25, 2015
    Mezza luna. Dark chocolate cake. Wonderful service.
  • Foodimentary
    FoodimentaryMay 10, 2013
    Bring your check book but the food is amazing
  • Kirsten P.
    Kirsten PeisselAugust 6, 2012
    Squid ink spaghetti is out of this world.
  • Ben Z.
    Ben ZweigMay 21, 2013
    Oh my god the crudo. Get the tasting.
  • Alexandra Y.
    Alexandra YJuly 22, 2013
    Salmon roe crudo and corn salad are ridiculous.
  • jpli18
    jpli18April 22, 2014
    Awkward service for a mediocre dinner. Can't say that I've been sat between two senior tables before. The crudo was the best part; then it went downhill.
  • Jannie
    JannieMarch 13, 2012
    The salt crusted Branzino for two is a must have!
  • Mariah B.
    Mariah BoydAugust 21, 2013
    The cold lobster soup is superb.
  • Maria
    MariaJuly 11, 2012
    Best Aperol Spritz I've had in NYC--who knew?
  • Edlin C.
    Edlin ChoiAugust 7, 2012
    Hate leaving bad reviews but this has to be one of the worst restaurant experiences I've ever had. Food took an hour+ & not one dish in our table of four was even mediocre. (1 of 4 petals via Fondu) Read more
  • Chris M.
    Chris MaliwatDecember 15, 2016
    Gnocchi - Grubstreet's #12 NYC dumpling
  • Brian K.
    Brian KayeSeptember 7, 2014
    The branzino is very good.
  • Phoenix 💥💥💥
    Phoenix 💥💥💥September 16, 2014
    An excellent spot for pre-theatre dinning
  • Robert S.
    Robert StavisFebruary 20, 2010
    The crudos are fantastic as is the grotto misto. Sometimes you just need to eat fried fish.
  • Reggie V.
    Reggie ValentineJanuary 18, 2013
    Been here 10+ times
    Ask for Chris Cloherty. He knows hospitality.
  • Jess P.
    Jess PoshepnyNovember 18, 2010
    Delicious crudo and everything! Get the taster!
  • ZenFoodster
    ZenFoodsterSeptember 11
    Altho' signature crudo & seared scallop entreé were good, most pasta dishes were too salty for my palate. See my tip below re: rude service.
  • Jessie L.
    Jessie LebitzNovember 23, 2016
    The baby octopus is amazing
  • Roman B.
    Roman BedinerOctober 31, 2015
    Oysters were okay, but striped bass was excellent
  • Jean T.
    Jean TheobaldJune 3, 2014
    Diver Scallop was outstanding! !
  • Kelly
    KellyMarch 24
    Okay, and I guess good for the immediate neighborhood, but way over priced for what it is. Food is hit/miss.
  • Lisa M.
    Lisa MSeptember 15, 2011
    Been here 10+ times
    The crudo tasting is amazing!
  • Matthew M.
    Matthew McCallDecember 28, 2014
    Some of the best sea food in NYC
  • Reggie V.
    Reggie ValentineAugust 21, 2011
    Been here 10+ times
    Ask for Christopher Cloherty, all class all good.
  • Chefs Feed
    Chefs FeedAugust 5, 2014
    Sam Hazen, chef of The Chester, eats here on his nights off. He loves the Crudo Tasting. Read more
  • Michael M.
    Michael McKinnonJune 1, 2010
    Been here 10+ times
    Go to the bar and eat with Vic! Knows the menu better than he knows himself!
  • Jeong Sun P.
    Jeong Sun ParkFebruary 6, 2014
    Try the Spaghetti alla Chittara
  • Jeffrey F.
    Jeffrey FreseMarch 18, 2012
    Lobster spaghetti is brilliant!
  • Amanda C.
    Amanda CormierFebruary 21, 2012
    Eater recommends the linguine with clams.
  • Rebecca W.
    Rebecca WFebruary 23, 2015
    Delicious tasting menu
  • Peter E.
    Peter ElbaorAugust 7, 2016
    They don't accommodate personal preferences
  • Diana F.
    Diana FFebruary 24, 2011
    Tell waiter that you checked into foursquare and get a free glass of champagne at lunch
  • Mario B.
    Mario BataliMarch 1, 2011
    Baked little necks w prosciutto and breadcrumbs Capital of Yumsville
  • Monica R.
    Monica RomanFebruary 14, 2011
    Been here 5+ times
    Razor clam crudo is the best
  • Mike M.
    Mike McFallOctober 7, 2011
    Sit at the bar and chat with Vic.
  • Slow Food NYC
    Slow Food NYCJune 27, 2012
    Happy to award the Snail of Approval to Esca
  • Chris K.
    Chris KonecnyJanuary 9, 2015
    Certainly wasn't bad but I expected more from a Mario Batali experience
  • Jeong Sun P.
    Jeong Sun ParkFebruary 6, 2014
    Try the Spaghetti Neri
  • mtg135
    mtg135July 28, 2011
    Best Uni pasta!
  • Tony
    TonyMay 7, 2016
    Great service!
  • Adam K.
    Adam KubanFebruary 21, 2012
    Linguine with clams.
  • Su L.
    Su LeeMarch 1, 2012
    linguine with clams.
  • ZiZi
    ZiZiDecember 8, 2013
    Mmmmm Branzino...
  • Carrie K.
    Carrie KwokJune 8, 2014
    Do not eat here. There was a mouse on the patio and management claimed that it's a part of "eating in New York City"
  • Tom M.
    Tom McIntyreFebruary 18, 2011
    Perfect. Seafood.
  • Andie E.
    Andie EstesFebruary 23, 2016
    Get gnocchi
  • Colin S.
    Colin StarkMarch 31, 2010
    The gnocchi here is amazing.
  • Bryan F.
    Bryan FerreiraAugust 17, 2014
    Just arrived. I'll get back to you.
  • Jessica G.
    Jessica GreifAugust 27, 2010
    Quality doesn't measure up to the price.
  • doug c.
    doug chertokJuly 23, 2009
    Double flights of crudo, and say hi to David Pasternack!
  • 🍕Lisa R H.
    Hair in my dessert - avoid
  • Peter B.
    Peter BuonocoreJanuary 17, 2012
    Been here 100+ times
    It is not Mario!
  • ShoeHefner
    ShoeHefnerFebruary 24, 2011
  • Sora G.
    Sora GolobJune 9, 2012
    Not Mario's best, for the price go somewhere else.
  • trevor
    trevorNovember 24, 2009
    great music, great tasting menu
  • Miguel Angel R.
    Miguel Angel RuizMarch 22, 2011
    Never ask de tester menu, it's a piece of shit.
  • Easy Figure I.
    Wishing we had served our Italian coffee here...How about a partnership @escarestaurant? Molti clienti di NY piacerebbero asseggiare nostro cafe di 1870...e anche buono per il suo negozio :)
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