By Cayla Muschel, Arts and Culture Editor
The Noi Due restaurants are a staple in the world of kosher restaurants. Originally a small, kosher, Italian eatery in an off-Broadway basement, Noi Due now has multiple locations. One of these spots is the Noi Due cafe, nestled in the heart of the Upper West Side. Relative to the rest of Manhattan, the West Side is a quiet neighborhood; the cafe is the only spot on the block that draws a crowd.
Soft acoustic tunes play over the speakers while patrons sit in brick walled alcoves or at the windows. Quiet chatter arises from the windows, bar, and tables in the back. The meal begins with appetizers; arancini, speared caprese salads, or macaroni and cheese balls are served on simple ceramic dishes. After sharing appetizers, diners dig into gourmet editions of warm comfort food: crispy pizzas, creamy pastas, and for the particularly sophisticated diner, artfully roasted fish. If arriving in the morning, patrons can enjoy French toast, a mild shakshuka, and a warm, decorated latte.
Noi Due Cafe is one of the rare few restaurants that came out stronger during the pandemic, and it is not hard to see why. The cozy, family atmosphere has drawn residents of Manhattan in the wake of the virus in search of warmth, while the sophistication of the restaurant ensures a quality experience for connoisseurs.