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The tables at this lively little joint are packed a bit tightly, but no worries; a sip of vino and some of chef Frank Crispo’s creations will soon have you feeling expansive. Inventive appetizers include warm octopus salad, doused with olive oil and coiled atop creamy boiled potatoes, and the acclaimed warm polenta, enriched with mascarpone and Parmesan, then topped with slices of smoked mozzarella, pepper, chives and a layer of see-through-thin prosciutto San Daniele. The hearty, salty pastas stick to tradition, and there are daily fish specials. Chocolate desserts are on target; try the dark-chocolate torta, presented in a pool of hazelnut zabaglione with rum-soaked raisins.
Venue name: Crispo
Address: 240 W 14th St
New York
Cross street: between Seventh and Eighth Aves
Opening hours: Mon–Thu 5–11:30pm; Fri, Sat 5pm–midnight; Sun 4–11pm
Transport: Subway: A, C, E, 1, 2, 3 to 14th St; L to Eighth Ave
Price: Average main course: $17. AmEx, DC, Disc, MC, V
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