’ll just say it: This is my favorite place to eat in New York. While no one “quintessential Manhattan” restaurant exists, Via Carota exquisitely inhabits one version of the mythology. It’s the filtered, shifting light that seeps through the picture windows overlooking a narrow West Village street. It’s the crowd’s smart air (especially at lunch, the ideal time to drop in). And it’s certainly the assured Italian cooking, heavy on vegetable dishes but also with soul-soothing pleasures like tagliatelle showered with Parmesan and draped with prosciutto. An unusually harmonic partnership animates the place: Chef couple Rita Sodi and Jody Williams each started still-successful restaurants nearby before combining forces on their joint darling. I always feel cheered by their doting brand of culinary co-parenting.
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