Don’t be fooled by the stereotypical “Little Italy” red and white checkered awning. This non-touristy, new Italian restaurant won me over, surprisingly, with the first bite of the simplest dish: braised veggies. I could have had this as my entire meal and been satisfied walking out that door (but, really, who would do that?). The staff is talkative and makes you feel as if you’ve been there a million times and that it’s “just another great night at Rubirosa for [insert your name here].” Start out with the Roasted Beet Salad. It’s a great first green and healthy coating for the stomach that is about to be lined with cheese and bread. The small pizzas are more than enough for three people to share if you are also getting appetizers. I also really love the meatball side for an app.Everyone raves about the Vodka pie’s here. Yes, it is grand but I’m a bigger fan of making your own pizza and adding ricotta salata to it. The thin, crisp, grease-free and freshly grated cheese is everything I have been looking for in a NYC slice. A sweet touch can be added by eggplant. You win all night long at Rubirosa with a bottle of the house red or white wine costing a total of only $25. Who wouldn’t want to be a regular here? It’s ideal for any day of the week with it’s casual and welcoming atmosphere and passes the test for a date spot as well.