Last night we found a new spot that opened a couple of blocks from Lincoln Center about a year and a half ago; how did I miss
JOANNE's BISTRO (www.joannenyc.com at 70 West 68th St)?
It's simple with wooden tables and floors (was that a garden out back in the dark-I couldn't tell), a small bar up front, fresh flowers and great prices. Wednesday is Pappardelle night so any pasta dish can be changed to home made pappardelle for a total of $18 (which means that the pasta dishes are all under $18 usually). I chose the Penne with Broccoli-Rabe & Hot(u can also get sweet) Italian sausage and upgraded to Pappardelle. The sauce was a simple white wine and spice sauce and it was just right. My guest had the Salmon with a pumpkin sauce that she raved about. The 2012 bottle of Arboreto Montepulciano d'Abruzzo was about $35 and is also a steal. It's a great place also for cappuccino as they make a frothy cup which is great. The only problem is that the rear room is a bit isolated and you may have to raise your hand a while to get some help as they are often running to the front where the kitchen entry is. I look forward to returning again to this simple and reasonably priced place. By the way, I saw the ribeye at the next table and it must have weighed well over a pound!