When yet another overcrowded eatery opens in New York, a diner must ask: “Should I bother jockeying for space?” In the case of Gottino, the answer is, “Absolutely.” Though the latest from co-owners Michael Bull and chef Jody Williams (Morandi) is not a restaurant per se—with its long marble bar, piddling five tables and menu of choice Italian nibbles to go with the all-Italian wine list, this narrow spot is indeed an enoteca. So what makes queueing up worthwhile, especially when the vino is somewhat pricey? (The least expensive glass goes for $9, and there are too few bottles under $40.) Choose a prosecco cocktail instead—we prefered the passion fruit and freshly squeezed blood-orange juices topped off with bubbly—which kicks off the night with a burst of fizzy color. Then attack the menu. Divided into salumi and cheese on one side, and prepared bites on the other, it provides multiple opportunities for memorable bites. Thick-cut cacciatorini (cured pork sausage) luxuriates in a shallow pool of olive oil infused with oregano and garlic, while in another wee dish, eye-poppingly tangy white anchovies keep company with celery, parsley and preserved lemon. On the mellower side was the fabulously saline cod whipped smooth with olive oil, as well as fragrant lady apples stuffed with meaty cotechino sausage—one of few available hot plates. Much of the food appears, almost magically, from behind the busy bar, where servers in civilized costumes of white shirts, ties and aprons whiz about, making sure everyone is well watered and fed. As tempting as it is to continue grazing on savories, reserve room for the astoundingly creamy fior di latte gelato, served with orange rinds candied in-house. It’s delicious—and definitely worth the wait.