Gran Tivoli has a lot going for it as a group dinner spot. The attractive space in Nolita has big booths with round tables, and a great cocktail bar in the basement called Peppi’s Cellar, where you can get drinks before or after dinner. The long menu of shareable Italian dishes has options whether you want to keep it light or not, and some of the food is very good (we like the polenta topped with a big portion of crab, and the perfectly cooked veal schnitzel with soft-boiled eggs and anchovies). But there are also definite misses, like the ravioli drenched in butter and the pork belly that tastes like a $35 hunk of fat. As long as you avoid those, this is a good option for an upscale dinner with friends, or a business dinner in Soho.
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