Just off the crossroads of Park Avenue and 42 Street, VB offers a combination that's too often rare in Manhattan and its plethora of self-styled northern Italian eateries: good food, excellent beverages (incl. expertly mixed he-man-sized cocktails) and un-snobbish, friendly service. The menu is long, the daily specials numerous and the staff will, if possible and without fuss, prepare any dish that remains unmentioned. Based on numerous visits for dinner (we keep going back) we like its antipasti (exceptional seafood salad and, in season, fresh artichokes), not-oversauced pastas and excellent seafood and meats, including, among the latter, croatian classics such as cevapcici --the mildy spiced ground meat grilled on skewers. There's an excellent wine list, too. Portions tend to be on the gargantuan side (we always carry home a hefty doggy bag) but half-servings are available for pastas. Desserts --if one can still find space for them-- can be excellent, too. An all-around winner that has been around for many years and for good reason.
Pros: Location, service, food, drinks