I’m a bit confused by your link above… it just takes me to a regular Google search of Amor y Amargo. Is there a feature that I’m not noticing which displays photos/info for bars and restaurants at different hours of the day? I’ve never heard of that before, if so! Please teach me how to use this because it sounds great!
Change the pull-down menu to the day of the week you’re interested in, and the graph below will adjust to show you how busy the restaurant is likely to be.
Wow, that’s a really useful feature! I wonder how accurate it could possibly be though? Do you know what process Google uses to reach these determinations?
It looks like a fairly steady and consistent stream of traffic between 6pm and 1am on a Saturday evening. Even with a 30 minute wait (I can’t imagine it being much longer) I think we should still be okay for two drinks as that would give us at least an hour+ at the bar before we’d have to cut out to Estela…
Based on absolutely nothing, I’m going to say check-ins via Foursquare or something similar. I’ve found it to be quite accurate as to when a place is lightly populated. Soon after Amor y Amargo first opened, I made a couple of attempts to go (because I was in the neighborhood anyway) and was told the wait was 2+ hours. But that was a while ago - it may have cooled off.
2 hours?! Ouch… thanks for the warning. I’ll be sure to call ahead. Is there a waitlist or something so that you don’t have to stand around in front of the building?
This is going back more than five years, so I may remember wrong, but I think the hostess offered to take my cell number and call when a space opened up.
I have two additional questions re. neighborhood Village spots:
- Dante on Macdougal
This place looks charming; is it any good? What about cocktails? Is it worth dropping into for aperitifs before dinner at Carbone?
- Doma Na Rohu
Anyone know the history of this German/Czech pub? It looks like it’s been around forever and I’m somewhat surprised that I wasn’t hipped to it sooner. Is it good for breakfast/brunch/anything? It looks like they have nightly jazz too… I’d love to get more info!
(that should be a number “2” beside Doma)
Honestly i’m not familiar with either. If you’re planning to go on a weeknight go to Little Branch for craft cocktails. It’s semi obnoxious that it lacks a proper sign and there’s usually a door guy but the cocktails are really excellent and on a sun-wed pm won’t be too crowded
I also kind of love The Rusty Knot which is kitchy and silly and has fun tiki drinks- not serious craft cocktails but they are well made. Probably a ten - fifteen min walk to Carbone since it’s on the west side highway
Bar sardine is also great for cocktails, but just as tiny as the name implies , so hit or miss on timing for how busy it is.
We’ve been to Little Branch a few times before. My wife actually lived in the Village for a couple of years (while studying at NYU) so she knows a lot of the venerable institutions, but that was six years ago… six months in New York passes like six years in other cities; things change so fast!
BTW, I think I’d die if I attempted to go for tiki drinks before a heavy dinner at Carbone! I’d surely explode!! I was thinking of maybe a light aperitif involving some vermouth and Italian liqueurs, hehe.
Dante sort of excited me because of the classically designed & inviting bar space and proximity to the restaurant, so I was just curious how their cocktails were. It looks like a real neighborhood spot. I doubt it’s a destination kind of bar. I’ll dig around the web for some reviews and post links if I find anything interesting!
Have you ever tried the lobster fra diavolo from Arturo’s?
Also, are their meatballs or sausage toppings any good?
Try Dante, from their site it looks like a great spot!
If dante is packed try bar sardine, then if bar sardine is also a no-go Otto isn’t far and as your wife probably knows it has a large bar area and helpful/knowledgeable bar tender who will make whatever you like.
And yeah, whoops, rusty knot before carbone would be not the best idea! Definitely go at some point, just svoid late night when it gets roudy (ie after 11pm/midnight)
Is Carbone regularly such a pain in the ass to book?
Following their reservation policies, I tried for a table at the stroke of the midnight hour, exactly one month in advance of our date.
I spent a full 30 minutes refreshing the webpage, waiting for the date to appear in the system.
It finally popped up on the Reserve calendar approx. 20 mins earlier than expected (around 11:40 PM) and it was completely sold out except for 5 pm and 10:30 pm seatings!
I had to switch our party size (group of 4) half a dozen times before landing a less than desirable and disappointing 6:30 pm table - still better than 5 pm or closing hour!
I then followed Carbone’s overly complicated policy of contacting the restaurant at exactly 9 am this morning (one month to the date) - I was told that any emails received prior to their 9 am opening would receive a later place in their queue.
I synchronized with time.is atomic clock for EST (NY) and fired off two consecutive emails to the second – one is actually time-stamped 5:59 am (8:59 am EST) and the other 6 am (9 am EST). Surely with so much diligence invested, I had to have been among the very first to get an email out.
I just received a response saying that they are fully booked, so we’re stuck with the Morty Seinfeld early bird table.
I wouldn’t be surprised if people are writing bots to cheat the reservation system.
Is it typically such an ordeal to score a table at Carbone during normal or reasonable dining hours?
I could get an easier booking at EMP or any of the Crenn/Saison/Quince/etc types in San Francisco, from experience. What a major downer… especially when planning for an expensive evening out.
Oh my god! What an epic saga…! I have only been there once (not so many vegetarian options) and a friend of a friend knew someone who reserved for us, i’m surprised it’s such a pain.
If you’re open to other options there are plenty of fantastic italian restaurants right there in the west village that may be easier to book- or better yet go to a great no reservations spot like bar pitti (smaller and more casual, order off the daily specials and i think they’re still cash only) and put down your names on the early side (6:30/7) and then go for your drinks while waiting for the table.
There’s i sodi, via carota, l’amico, l’artusi (it’s a restaurant group with several that are all excellent), babbo, (also a PITA for reservations though)… others as well that i am blanking on at the moment…
I remember hearing about a website that actually books reservations at popular spots and then sells them to the public! So like $20 for a 6pm but more for an 8pm. And then there are the VIP slots they just hold, and tables for various hotels/concierges/special relationships etc…
I haven’t tried lobster fra diavolo but have had other fra diavolo dishes that were good. Yes, I like their meatball and sausage toppings, from what I recall.