NYC Dining: Gelato at OTTO Enoteca Pizzeria (UPDATED)

Otto Enoteca Pizzeria
1 5th Ave, New York, NY
(212) 995-9559

Web Site:

Click here for Hi-Res Slide Show of OTTO

One of my favorite evening stops in New York City is OTTO Enoteca Pizzeria, a restaurant that is part of the Batali-Bastianich empire which includes places like Babbo, Esca, Lupa and Casa Mono.

When OTTO first opened, it caused quite a bit of stir from pizza enthusiasts, many of which were unable to reconcile their notion of American-style pizza with the type of derivative Sardenian-style grilled pizza (Carta de Musica) that is served at the restaurant. This 2003 discussion on eGullet Classic talks about it ad-nauseum, and is worth reading for historical context. Since then, the pizza has been tweaked to fit local tastes and the restaurant’s pizzas have received many accolades from some of New York’s most critical palates.

OTTO is much more than a pizza place. Its a great place to meet up with friends and have a drink of phenomenally good Italian wine selections, eat some great antipasti, cheese and salumi, but most of all, indulge in some of the very best gelato in the city, made by pastry chef Meredith Kurtzman. In fact I would probably say it IS the very best gelato in the city, and you don’t have to wait on one hour plus long lines in order to get it either.

The storefront on 5th Avenue.

Gelato at OTTO should be high on your list of evening ice cream stops. Click on the “Read the rest of this entry” link below for more.

A view of the bar area.

A glance down the main dining room.

The salumeria.

This is a manually-driven antique Berkel slicer, which is used to make razor-thin slices of OTTO’s salumi for antipasti plates.

The menu of Dolci, or sweet stuff.

The cheese selections board.

This is a Coppetta with Olive Oil Gelato, Passion Fruit Granita, Strawberries, Basil Syrup, Olive Oil and Maldon Sea Salt. By far the favorite of all the excellent dolci dishes we had.

This is a Grapefruit Campari sorbetto paired with a Ricotta Cheese Gelato. I really liked this one a lot, the sorbetto was excellent as a palate cleanser for the other two copettas.

This is a Copetta with Butterscotch Pecan Gelato (with whole pieces of pecan in it), Coffee Bourbon Syrup, Spiced Bananas, and Marscapone Cheese. Kind of like an Italian take on the classic New Orleans dessert, Bananas Foster. I really liked this one as well.

Zabaglione with Vanilla Gelato and Peaches

Lemon Sorbetto /Lemon Curd / Ricotta Gelato / Cherry Copetta. I really loved the Lemon sorbetto in this, its incredibly tart and refreshing, just like squeezing a fresh lemon on your tongue.

7 Responses to NYC Dining: Gelato at OTTO Enoteca Pizzeria (UPDATED)

  1. seisei says:


    Did you go to Otto expressly for gelato, and were they fine with seating you only for dessert? I’ve h as some problems getting seated in restaurants for dessert in the past.

  2. Just for gelato, yes.
    OTTO is the kind of place that is designed for people that want light meals or come in just for dessert. The bar area in front has bar seating or table stands where you can just get Gelato/Dolci or have wine and cheese. The main dining room is reserved for people who want to get a complete dinner.

  3. jordana says:

    I think writing about Otto’s gelati would be like writing about a woman’s shoe, or her style of dress, without noticing the very essence of the woman that makes her shoes, or her style so appealing or unappealing. Otto is one of the best wine bars in NYC — and therefore, probably one of the best wine bars in the U.S. Yes, eat some gelati, but not if it’s going to distract you from venturing into the wine list, and with wine, I’d just prefer some cheese or any of the antipasti or bruschetta, or pizza that they offer. If you don’t have any idea about italian wine but want to try something perfect that is not overpriced, just ask for one of the sommeliers (wine experts always on the floor) Peter or Marcos, and I personally guarantee you that they will not only treat you well, but make you want to always drink your wine at Otto. See, I think the one thing missing today is customer service — and really, I don’t care how good your gelati is — because if it means gelati without love and with an attitude instead, I don’t want it! At Otto, there is love.

  4. But all we wanted was dessert! Is that so wrong!

    The wine list did look great, but we were winding down a night of heavy eating at Katz’s.

  5. Rochelle says:

    Back before I went to culinary school, I spent a morning in NY bumming around the Greenmarket with Chef Meredith. We talked about ice cream a lot, and she bought several ingredients for ice creams to play with while we were walking around. I tried a lot of her tips and techniques and made some of the best ice creams of my life. This was right before she left Esca to run the pastry program at OTTO. She was very inspirational and I liked that she was also brutally honest about the realities of a career in the culinary world. I’m glad to read her ice creams are still top-notch.

  6. growitgreen says:

    I love gelato, but it is difficult to find a shop that makes it in my small town in S.C. so, I have to make it myself when I get a craving. I appreciate all of the recipes I can get my hands on. Check out this “cool” article about gelato at

  7. btw they make an awesome bloody mary. one of the best in the city — believe me.. i know.. lol

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: