Bottega 1331 2nd Ave. Bt. E 70th & 71st Sts.
Upper East Side
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Smack dab in the current heart of beautiful Second Avenue subway construction comes a by-the-book Italian restaurant that hardly needs jackhammers and cranes to overshadow it. This self-proclaimed “white linen” neighborhood trattoria is indistinguishable from countless others on the UES. First “platti” like ravioli or gnocchi hover around $17 while “secondis” of pesce or carne are in the $21-$34 range. Are there “insalatas” and “zuppe”? Duh, and charcuterie too. Nothing outstanding and nothing special, with every menu item called by and then described in Italian to obscure the fact it's the same stuff you get anywhere and everywhere. At least the portions are ample and tasty, personal wines are allowed (though a corkage fee is assessed), and there’s patio dining (though the ongoing construction creates more dust in the air than a Wild West ghost town). Bon apetit! Er, buon appetito! Oh, whatever.