Motorino UWS or Keste

Hi, would appreciate any thoughts? for our NY trip, we’re going to either do Motorino or Keste for dinner. Would be a party of 10. Would love to get thoughts on both the food, but perhaps the comfort of such a large group at either? Foodwise, I was leaning towards Keste, but in terms of where we’d want to walk around before / after dinner, I love the UWS…


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I love the downtown Motorino (haven’t been to the uptown branch), and I’ve only been to Keste once, soon after it opened. I remember liking the pizza but feeling extremely rushed by the staff. That may have been a function of how busy they were, but for a relaxed meal, I’d choose Motorino.

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I prefer Osteria Cotta right across the street to Motorino. (Not a fan of the soggy-middle pizza, and especially not in a group.)

Cotta does excellent pizza, but also has a full menu. Or go to Celeste, ditto.

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Thanks for all the suggestions on this and prior threads!

I think we’ve decided on Keste because it allows us to spend the afternoon wandering the WTC Memorial, Freedom Tower, Brooklyn Bridge and Wall Street. I figure I can’t go wrong there for pizza?

Going to do brunch at Barney Greengrass later in the week as the anchor for our UWS day.

@vinouspleasure can give you better pizza advice re Keste or other downtown spot.

Re downtown plan, keep in mind the WTC memorial is very heavy for anyone with New York affiliation, so plan accordingly. I always need a break after.

If you’re walking the Brooklyn Bridge, fwiw I like starting in Bk and ending with a snack or meal in Chinatown. (Though I prefer the Manhattan bridge for views and less crowd, plus a nice view of the BB too.)


Agreed re WTC. For the kids, will be the first time they’ve seen it. For me, was on Capitol Hill during 9/11 and later worked at Lehman Brothers, so have many friends who were fortunate that day. Will definitely be a moment for me.

As for the bridge, I’m not sure we’re that ambitious… probably just a short walk to say we got on, as we’ll be in tow with my MIL, who is much older.

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The various ferries are a nice alternative too.

Haven’t been to Keste since the pandemic started but it was very good last time I was there and if you can get a reservation for a party of that size, even better. I prefer it to Motorino which is a divisive bake among pizza obsessives. with some calling it naan-like. My favorite Neo pie in Manhattan is Song E Napule but not sure a party of that size work and I’m not even sure they have an indoor dining room :slight_smile:

I’m guessing you realize you’re travelling to NYC with your family and eating pizza baked in the style of Naples. If your family hasn’t had pizza in NYC before, try and get them to a Joe’s branch, I’ve long called it the cannonical NYC slice and they have good consistency accross their locations. Right now Scarr’s is my favorite NYC slice so if you’re in the area, worth grabbing a slice for everyone.

If you wanted a sitdown NYC style pizza experience, Rubirosa or Joe and Pats are very good. And if you want an authentic NYC experience, in cobble hill lies Sam’s Pizza, very good NYC-style whole pies.


we were at osteria cotta a couple of times a month for happy hour, I see post-pandemic they raised their prices and narrowed their HH menu but $8 for a delicous, well-baked personal pie is still a wonderful bargain.

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Thank you @vinouspleasure! Super helpful. Interesting re Motorino / naan… ironically, my kids love naan, so they’d probably be all over it :slight_smile:

So yeah, we lived in NYC for a long time. Love the quintessential NYC slices / pies. My in-laws are also coming over from LA and I think we’re going to hit one of those as a grab and go type lunch versus a sitdown. The pizza scene in LA is solid, although I’m eager to try Keste and for my in-laws, they almost entirely eat in the SGV so I thought Keste would be a nice changeup for them.

Keste was excellent. And they have this great square table that comfortably seated 10. Everyone loved the pizza. Keep in mind, the in laws are used to eating thick crusted, typical CA pizza shop with blah ingredients so this was a revelation. My MIL could not stop eating.