We had the chance to Interview Chef Paola Bottero of Paola’s in Manhattan’s quintessential Carnegie Hill neighborhood. At Paola’s, Chef Bottero’s menu is all about Italian Cuisine that is beloved by locals because it is homemade, true, and sincere. Here’s a little info on Chef Paola Bottero, Paola’s restaurant, and her philosophy on life.
FE: Tell us a little bit about Paola’s
Paola Bottero: Paola’s Restaurant bridges 2 worlds mixing traditional Italian cuisine with contemporary, farm fresh ingredients and inventive takes on classic dishes. Nightly regulars from the neighborhood mix with museum go’ers and city visitors to create a vibrant room where friends, celebrities, and captains of industry mix; all there to enjoy an ample menu enhanced with extensive daily specials. Imported Italian ingredients, bounty from American farms, and traditional Italian recipes find each other and delight customers, many of whom return nightly. I walk the floor with Stefano (my son) greeting our extended “family” and making sure everything is just right – as it’s been for 30 years.
FE: What is your restaurant philosophy? What is the one thing your entire team works towards?
Paola Bottero: At Paola’s we reach for the traditional mix of Italian Hospitality; a warm and genuine welcome, an excellent meal, and a combination of the expected and the inventive.
FE: What is your most popular dish?
Paola Bottero: We have many popular dishes that different customers claim is our “signature”, however our Carciofi alla Giudia, which are twice crisped baby artichokes in the style of the Roman Jews, are perhaps our most original and rare dish. It is very hard to find both the correct artichoke prepared in the traditional 2 day method, and people come often seeking “the Roman Roses” as they look when they are prepared.
FE: When I go to your bar, what is the one cocktail I must absolutely try?
Paola Bottero: Paola’s has a gracious and welcoming bar where friends love to come meet up and enjoy drinks, a glass of wine and have aperitivi. Our bartender loves to serve a Negroni, with it’s appetite enhancing taste, and warm glow that matches the decor and the delight of the customer.
FE: What makes you stand out above the rest?
Paola Bottero: Uncompromising standards of primary ingredient quality and hand made, artisanal techniques.
FE: Are there any deals that I should take advantage of when I come by?
Paola Bottero: We serve lunch, dinner and weekend brunch and are open almost every day of the year. The biggest value is that our guests receive the quality they pay for, consistently, and to their delight. We have outdoor dining in warm weather and also deliver and do catering for private parties.
Paola’s Restaurant is located at 1295 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10128 (212) 794-1890
Hours of Operation: Lunch, dinner, brunch: 11 am – 10 pm
Dress Code: Neighborhood elegant or business
Price Range: Appetizers $12-20, entrees $24-46
Payment Options: All credit cards and house accounts
Nearby Landmarks: Museum Mile, Cooper Hewitt, The Jewish Museum, The Guggenheim, Central Park, The Jacqueline Onassis Reservoir, 92nd Street Y, Hunter College High School, Meredith Palmer Gallery, the Russian Consulate.
- Barilla Master Chef Award
- Accademia Italiana della Cucina
- OpenTable Diners’ Choice Award – several years
- Trip Advisor Award of Excellence
- Italian American Chamber of Commerce Hospitality Award
- Gruppo Restauratori Italiano
- James Beard Honoree
Have you been there? Leave a review and check to see if there are Paola’s coupons for your next visit.