Avena - Downtown
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AVENA Downtown, is a chef-driven Northern Italian restaurant helmed by Chef Roberto Deiaco. Open for lunch and dinner, the menu emphasizes freshness and modern techniques in Chef Deiaco's interpretation of Italian cuisine.
We were so pleasantly surprised how fantastic the food and service at this new resto. We wandered in, was welcomed warmly by owner, then super knowledgeable server recommended their barolo wine by the glass, and recited with aplomb the night’s specials (lobster acquerello risotto, veal paillard with frisee and truffle, fresh porcini pasta, langoustines with chanterelles, etc). Phenomenal food, preceeded by amuse bouche and freshly baked breadbasket. They make 3 kinds from organic Italian flour, everyday! We dined so well, it was a happy family moment, for a change sans cellphone calls and social media interruptions.
Avena gave us delicious and beautiful plates, served by an attentive and attractive waitstaff, in stunning digs…what’s not to love? Even the bill, not cheap for a weekday family meal, but wasn’t astronomical either, considering we split a white truffle pasta. Our best meal in a long time! This resto not for everyday dining, but our server said their Osteria next door, a more casual place, will be opening next week. Guess that will be the family go-to cafeteria when they open. Can’t wait! Thank you Austin our server and Coleman the bartender for taking care and indulging us.
Fantastic service. Great food.
Sat at 8:15, order was finally taken at 8:40, appetizers arrived after 9, was told by our waiter that he “fired up” our mains at 9:20 (even though he told us repeatedly that everything takes a while to cook as it’s made from scratch), food was delivered close to 10. Insane for a casual Italian restaurant. Food was good, we won’t be back.
Excellent food, wonderful service. The Veal Milanese and Ravioli with quail egg inside and truffles are exceptional, and showed the kitchen's superb standards. It's NOT the usual red sauce Italian joint, so it's not for everyone. The quality justifies the price. Our server was warm, a fountain of Italian culinary information and was quite entertaining. So glad to have stumbled upon such a gem of a restaurant we already booked Sunday dinner with other friends. Thank you Avena for coming to the Village!
The food was fantastic as well as the service. Will definitely return.
I really wanted to like this restaurant but left feeling very disappointed. It is a beautiful space and everyone was very nice but the service was disjointed and my friends and I found the constant attempts to sell us “white truffles that were just flown in” very pushy and silly. Seriously, almost every dish we asked about was described as being able to have white truffles added. Just stop - if we wanted some, we would have asked. Also, one waiter described a variety of specials but the man who took our order didn’t seem to know that any of them existed when we asked. Lastly, the servers didn’t know who ordered what dish. Not a huge deal but still unprofessional. The food itself was fine but nothing stood out. I’m sad because the reviews were uniformly positive and I feel like I ate in a completely different restaurant than the one I read about. With so many good places in the neighborhood, I doubt I’ll be returning.
Always amazing at AVENA!
Fabulous food. Fabulous service. Love it. A new soho gem. Been there 4 times in a few months. Our new go to place
Avena Downtown and the food and the staff are amazing!
The best Italian Food period ... DROP THE MIKE!
Fantastic food, best service.
Service was agonisingly slow, with servers taking 40 minutes to sit us down and to take our order. The Fritto Miso and the Mezzelune were too salty. Their risotto was tasty.
We popped in for wine before a dinner reservation somewhere else and I ended up wishing we dined with Avena instead. Staff were pleasant, professional, and welcoming. The wine list was impressive as there are pages of options by the bottle. I love the location and the decor inside was beautiful— very intimate and warm. I browsed the menu and there were definitely some things I expect to try on my return visit. Avena made a great first impression.
Food and service are praiseworthy. Wish this establishment got the credit it deserved, with more patrons. Scallops were phenomenal, while the steak just a touch undercooked. Solid cocktails, and surprised by a delicious tomato bisque - compliments of the chef. Charming outdoor seating, great place for a date, and even featured some live music. Would certainly return and recommend!
This place was absolutely incredible. We wanted to go to Little Italy for a great Italian meal, but instead opted to go someplace closer due to the pouring rain. We were not disappointed! The moment we stepped inside, the service was outstanding. We were offered a napkin to dry off from the rain upon arrival, we were escorted to a quiet table (very romantic atmosphere but most were casually dressed). Everything tasted amazing and even impressed my boyfriend who has been cooking for 20 years. No doubt I will visit again and have already recommended to many.
It’s not “everyday “ food for sure. Very pleasant all around. Great for dates!
Excellent! One of the best restaurants in NYC. My wife and I will return!
Delicious food and great service - we'll definitely be back.
Excellent, fresh food, beautifully prepared and presented. Great service.
Good food, but excellent service made the experience
Truly inventive menu, quiet enough for adult conversation, surprisingly inexpensive to boot. I'll be back for sure!
Great food and great service.
We went at an early hour (6:30) so had a tranquil table. We celebrated our anniversary and everyone did extra... treats from the kitchen, complimentary wine, candle and inscription with dessert. Lovely, attentive service from the waiter, sommelier, and maitre d'. And Roberto Deiaco's kitchen handle the most delicate dishes with great grace: scallops tender and deftly seasoned, fine pasta but with robust fillings, and a beautifully marbled veal chop.
OT doesn't allow a back arrow so I have to rewrite my review. A small addition to the many, many things that make the once invaluable OT rapidly becoming history, unless you seek reservations at The Olive Garden or its ilk. Been here three times in two weeks so obviously I like the place. My guests were very pleased with all of their food and wine. Carta Musica remain the best I know of and the chocolate ice cream, were it a bit less sweet would be a contender for best in the city. Service is beyond being accommodating: truly terrific. Question remains why Avena is sadly empty, while next door Bar Pitti never has an empty seat. Without question it is not the appalling food.
Excellent service! Food was perfectly prepared and served. The specials of the evening were delicious. Very comfortable feeling to the restaurant. Will return.
Excellent Food! We've been to Avena @ 57th Street since it opened, but sadly it was closed. This is the first time we visited the downtown location. The food is excellent as usual. Our Server Petar is very friendly!
I thought it was a lovely, quintessentially Village dining experience that I would absolutely recommend. Romantic and sophisticated for dates, or get together with friends. Food incredible across the board, one of the best Italian food I’ve tasted. Get the Casertana to start, it’s a must. Knowledgeable and friendly staff.
Despite the busy traffic in what seems like several big family tables (celebrating their NYU kid’s graduation), the staff remained attentive throughout our visit. Austin served our table with a smile & friendly jokes. The food was delicious & the ambiance warm & inviting. My family & I had a great experience. Thank you!! :-)
Food was good but this place will not make it. There is no front of the house. Waitstaff ran around like chickens without heads. Several tables had various complaints and the “manager” never surfaced
Was delish meal! The pasta was so fresh and flavorful!! Highly recommend!
Wow! Delicious food! If you want great authentic northern Italian food this is the place to eat! So wonderful! All was lovely! We had such a tasty and beautiful meal (pea soup, zucchini flan, pasta bolognese and osso bucco)! Couldn't have asked for a better dinner! Don't let the sidewalk issues stop you from eating here - it's soooo worth seeking out!
Great service, excellent wine. The prices are reasonable.
Great waiter named Austin. Tasty food. Will be back
I went to Avena for dinner and had an “ok” experience. The food was delicious but the restaurant staff were inexperienced due to the new opening. We had reservations at Avena but when we were greeted by the hostess she asked whether we would like to dine at their new affiliated restaurant next door that would be quieter and more intimate. We agreed but in retrospect that was a mistake. The service was extremely slow with only one person (the bartender) tending to 7 tables and the bar. He was extremely apologetic but it was clear he was overwhelmed. Additionally, the menus were completed mixed up. We were told we could order off of the menu at either restaurant but the bartender/waiter was confused and couldn’t answer questions about how much of the food on the menu was prepared. They were also out of multiple entrees even though the restaurant was only half full. I also overheard another table ordering something from the menu and was told that menu was outdated and they no longer had the item she was trying to order. All in all, it was a mess. Hopefully they pull their act together because the food was excellent!
Salad and both pasta dishes were exceptional. Austin provided excellent service.
Thank you Avena for opening this beautiful Restaurant, I love Italian food and so far this is the best Italian restaurant I had being. The food it's very tasty and freshly made. I love your house made pasta (Bolognese) and bread basket. I will come back soon.
Our first visit at Osteria was amazing! Food is fantastic and great service! We visited Avena couple weeks ago and had wonderful experience, so had to try new Osteria which is great spot for friends and family. We tried couple dished and absolutely loved pizza with wild mushrooms and truffle sauce.. my new favorite place!
The place is gorgeous, the wait staff is very professional,and the food was delicious
Everything was great from the food to the service. Duck, gnocchi and bolognese pasta simply delicious. Order the zucchini flan with truffles. Our server Christina was fantastic & we will definitely be back!
Afraid of being in an empty resto but place quickly filled up when sun came out and weather got warmer. That said, food was incredible. The ravioli with quail egg and perigord truffles, risotto with king crab, Colorado lamb chops, showed serious chef skills. Delicious. Will be back. Glad to have a nicer restaurant with higher quality (than the usual) in the hood.
Avena - Downtown offers takeaway which you can order by calling the restaurant at (212) 505-9252.
Avena - Downtown is rated 4.5 stars by 49 OpenTable diners.