New York Vacation Rentals


Best Budget Italian Food at Cucina di Pesce

2/26/2013 - By Marea Edynak

How does $13.95 for a 3-course dinner sound?  If you want tasty food for a very reasonable price, Run, don’t walk to Cucina di Pesce for the 4 to 6:30 PM Early Bird Special. You’re offered a salad, soup, your choice of 7 entrees, a side of pasta and a beverage all for a wallet pleasing low tab of under $14 ….almost unheard of in Manhattan.


Pastas are homemade, the fish is fresh and drinks are reasonable in this unpretentious East Village neighborhood bar and restaurant with a notorious history.


And what a history it is!  In the high rolling  1920′s and 1930′s Cucina di Pesce was a casino and mob haunt run by Charles “Lucky” Luciano, the chairman of the Mafia Syndicate. Later it morphed into a” connected” social club called the Stage Bar under the auspices of Vincent Ciraulo aka “Jimmy Second Ave.” of the Genovese family.


Now better known for its good food at bargain prices Cucina is a favorite of locals and often crowded. In summer there’s sidewalk dining and people watching as well as a garden.


The Calamari appetizer with Tomato, Cilantro and Scallions in a Lemon and Olive oil dressing was grilled to perfection. At only $11 the portion was entrée sized. The pumpkin Ravioli pasta comes with 5 huge round raviolis that are made to be shared.


Entre specialties include the Seafood Lasagna with Shrimp, scallops and Crabmeat in a Marinara Sauce for $18 and shown in the photo. And black linguini with shrimp and asparagus in a Pink Pernod Sauce for $17. A variety of Fresh fish is $17 to 23. Chicken, Veal and Steak are priced from $15 to $21. The hazel nut ice cream is homemade and is served in 3 giant scoops.


For other choices check out the web site:

87 East Fourth Street between 2nd and 3rd Avenues

212 6800



Tip For Travelers: Weekends are popular and it gets crowded. Go early or call for a reservation.
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