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Business Description
Founded in 1908 by the Davino family Grotta Azzurra was named for the blue grotto on the isle of Capri and designed to evoke the beauty of one of the worlds most famous caves in the world, intensified. Enrico Caruso feasted here after performances, and Sinatra called it his one and only favorite Italian restaurant, making it the site of many a “Rat Pack” evening. Shuttered for six years, Grotta Azzurra has now been stunningly renovated and rebirthed by a descendant renaissance for dining in Little Italy, with multi-talented chef Frank Castellana recreating the finest in Italian Cuisine.
BBB Rating
BBB Rating and Accreditation information may be delayed up to a week.

Regular Hours

Extra Phones

Phone: (212) 925-8317

Phone: (646) 652-7093

Fax: (212) 925-8317

Payment method
cash, all major credit cards, amex, diners club, discover, master card, visa
Price Range
Downtown Manhattan, Little Italy, NoLita

Grotta Azzurra Imports INC

Other Emails

Italian Restaurants, Mediterranean Restaurants, Caterers, Family Style Restaurants, Bars, Fine Dining Restaurants, Dessert Restaurants, Ice Cream & Frozen Desserts, Breakfast, Brunch & Lunch Restaurants, Restaurants
Other Information

Parking: Street

Wi-Fi: Free

Bike Parking: No

Attire: Casual

Cuisines: Fine Dining, Mediterranean, Caterers, Family Style, Breakfast, Brunch & Lunch, Italian, Dessert, Ice Cream, European, Continental

Alcohol: Full Bar

Takes Reservations: Yes

Outdoor Seating: Yes

Price Range : Average


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Provided by Citysearch - 
Discriminated against..very sad in 2012

I have never in my life been so infuriated and disgusted visiting a restaurant to eat. A few of my girlfriends and I made a reservation here to have Sunday Brunch. We arrived about 15 mins early, we're seated and introduced to our waiter. There were only about two or three other tables being occupied at the time. Immediately we got into conversation. Our waiter came and took our order and we went back into conversation. After about 20 minutes the place started to fill up, pretty quickly. It wasn't until they were seated and eating their bread that we realized we were never served bread. Every table was filled at this point and every table was served bread. We asked our waited and he then brought us out a large basket of bread. We were them absorbed into deep conversation again when I noticed that one of my friends was not saying a word, she just sat and observed what was going on around the restaurant. I looked around and realized that everyone who had come in after us were being served, eating and even some had all ready come and gone. We were all baffled and in disbelief of what was happening. We were literally the ONLY ones who were not eating. We confronted our waiter and he mumbled some sorry excuse that the kitchen is very busy and they have a big party in another section of the restaurant. That would be a wonderful explanation if people who had arrived way after us were it seated and eating. For goodness sakes, we ordered eggs and other simple breakfast foods. How long does it take to make that. As much as we didn't want to believe it was happening, it was crystal clear we were being discriminated against. I was so angry I was almost in tears. The waiter approached again, pitcher of Mimosa in hand. Apparently as some way of stalling us and he informed us that the cook said the food is coming. Are you serious? At this point we had lost our appetites and took whatever was left of our pride and exited the restaurant. We had our brunch at another Italian restaurant that treated us wonderfully. Our waiter was attentive and kind, she looked at us as ladies and did not treat us based on the color of our skin. It's disgusting that this happens in 2012, however it is a shocking reality.


Provided by Citysearch - 

We recently planned to take my husband to one of our favorite Little Italy restaurants to celebrate his birthday. To our surprise it was closed for renovations. Our path took us to Grotta Azzurra. A little hesitant because we had never dined here before, the family entered the restaurant. We are thrilled that we ate here! It is now our favorite New York restaurant. From appetizers to dessert, from specialty drinks to cappuccino, it was fabulous!. The food is authentic Italian (as if my ""Grandma D"" was in the kitchen cooking it herself) cooked fresh and absolutely delicious!!!! I shared my enthusiasm about Grotta Azzurra to my New Jersey co-workers and we have made plans to visit the restaurant in the very near future. Grotta Azzurra is surely a taste of Italy!


Provided by Citysearch - 
A restaurant that has only gotten better over time

My father came to this country from Sicily in 1920. Years later, when he could afford eating out, he would return to Little Italy and try differenet restaurants and over time Grotta Azzurra became his favorite. Shortly before he died in 1973, my entire family (2 parents, 10 kids) went there and had a wonderful meal in the below ground dining room, the only one at the time.
Recently, 3 of my sisters and I returned for lunch. We ate this time upstairs, which is a tastefully decorated with dark wood and white tablecloths topped with white butcher paper. The price fixed lunch was a wonderful surprise: a generous pasta course followed by an equally generous meat/chicken entree. We ordered four different meals and everyone was pleased with their choice. Not an easy accomplishment with four native New Yorkers!
I went downstairs to check out what is now the wine cellar/banquet room. I remembered it well after all these years but missed seeing the full wall mural of Naples' Blue Grotto. But the changes have only been improvements from what I remembered being a terrific restaurant years ago. I recently recommended the restaurant to my daughter and her boyfriend who were spending the weekend in Manhattan. They went for dinner and her text to me that night was ""the food was amazzzing!"" So 3 generations of my family have loved your restaurant and I have no doubt that feeling will continue as the years go by.


Provided by Citysearch - 
Like grandma's

Got to stop by!!!!

I heared of this place threw a friend, and had to check it out for myself, being Italian I was a little bit of a sceptic and boy was I plesently serprised the food was excelent it reminded me of my grandmothers cooking and that is saying alot, and the service was great, very attentive and with a smile.
What else is there to say, but you got to stop by: IT'S AWESOME!!!!!!!!!


Provided by Citysearch - 
Absolutely love this place!!!

I absolutely love this place!! 9.95$ for TWO courses(pasta and main) in the CITY??? You gotta be kidding me.Food is absolutely great,service is fast,they have special 'ladies'nite"" on Thursdays.Great place to come for a date or with a group of friends for a drink.Go-go-go Grotta!!!!


Provided by Citysearch - 
Outstanding fine restaurant

We sauntered upon this restaurant, not knowing much about it. We were graciously greeted at the door by an outside doorman, who escorted us to our seats and even helped us with our chairs. The waiter, service AND food were exceptional. We had salmon ($16) and Talapia ($21), spinach salad ($12) plus some drinks (at $7 each). The food was very tasty, freshly prepared, and enough to cause us to take some home. The service was professional, very courteous and welcoming. The outside temperature was very cold, but the inside was very comfortable. The decor was fairly new, but done approximately 8 years ago in the typical style of the turn of the 20th century, which was very appropriate. Floors and walls were tile; ceiling was of the 'tin"" vintage and the tableware was properly set. We felt that the value was exceptional and we will certainly be seen at Grotta Azzurra many times again in the future. It might be convenient to take public transportation to the venue rather than to drive there. The ""N"" train stops just 2 short blocks away.


Provided by Citysearch - 
Best food in little Italy

What an amazing find! The perfect restaurant in little italy. The food here is authentic and I will be coming back. The waiters are very nice and attentive and I had a fantastic time. I would recommend this to everyone!


Provided by Citysearch - 
Mmm Italian!

Best chicken parm! Came from NC to get some real Italian food! Great service and very affordable...highly recommended for a great date night!


Provided by Citysearch - 
Food for the right price!

Excellent food and excellent atmosphere! The servings are very filling and food is of superb quality. The service is great and you rarely wait a long time for your food. Definitely come for the lunch specials! They are worth every penny!


Provided by Citysearch - 

Food was great! Good location and friendly people. Good portion size (you won't leave hungry!) every thing was delish!!!

Eat here!

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