Dinner at Acqua Restaurant NYC (NYC)

Lemon Extasy - Limoncello, vodka, simple syrup and The Brudge - Rye whisky, Montenegro Amaro, fresh lemon juice, soda
West Coast oyster with caviar and Champagne vinaigrette

There are times when I crave simply cooked seafood in an unpretentious restaurant – and having both requirements eating out is kind of hard to find. But there is Acqua Restaurant. It’s down at the South Street Seaport area and this charming Italian seafood restaurant feels comfortable and cozy during the cold winter’s evening that a friend and I visited.

We started off with good cocktails – Lemon Extasy (a very lemon-centric cocktail that reminds me of a sophisticated boozy lemonade) and The Bridge (rye whisky, Montenegro Amaro, fresh lemon juice, and soda cocktail that was light enough for a dark spirit drink) – and a sweet West Coast oyster topped with caviar and Champagne vinaigrette. I wish I had a few more of those oysters.

Zuppa di Pesce - Seafood stew served with toasts
Cozze alla Marinara - PEI mussels, cherry tomatoes, white wine sauce, parsley
Whole Sea Bream 2-2.5 pounds

The rest of the seafood-centered meal was tasty. The zuppa di pesce, is a tomato-based seafood stew served with toasts was loaded with chunks of squid and fish with peas. The Cozze alla Marinara is a bowl loaded with PEI mussels and shrimp in an intense seafood, white wine and tomato tinged broth. The whole sea bream (about a two-pound fish) was grilled simply with salt, pepper and olive oil and topped with chopped parsley was brought to life with a squeeze of lemon. The fish was sublime because of its simplicity and it speaks to how fresh the fish was.

Mini chocolate chip cannoli
Limoncello sorbet with limoncello syrup

As for dessert, we shared a limoncello sorbet with limoncello syrup for my lemon fiend friend and mini chocolate chip cannoli. The tart sorbet was a good idea after having that many seafood dishes but the cannoli was really good. The cannoli is filled to order so the shells are crisp and the filling is creamy and had just enough sweetness.

Overall, it’s a great seafood restaurant that has a neighborhood-type feel. No pretense on the food or the service. The food was prepared simply that it lets the fresh ingredients (especially the seafood) shine.

To view more photos of this visit, please view the gallery below or CLICK HERE for the photo set:

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Acqua Restaurant NYC

21 Peck Slip
New York, NY 10038
Phone: (212) 349-4433


I shoot, eat, and drink. My full time job is a hospital administrator. Moonlighting as a freelance photographer and food and travel writer.