Why go: Euro-chic style and grandmotherly food crisscross at this lofty address with a well-tuned lineup of pastas, pizzas, panini, and salads and a backdrop of mosaic walls and stark white tables and chairs.
What to get: An airy fritto misto of calamari and zucchini; thin-crusted pizzas such as the Margherita (the new chef is from Naples, and the cafe has upgraded its pizza oven); penne Bolognese; silky panna cotta.
Best for: A bite before or after a movie or shopping; a gal-pal lunch; a great cup of Lavazza coffee.
Insider tip: The revamped menu includes a section of pricier entrées, but plenty of gently priced options remain. Check mcafebar.com for coupons—a recent one offered 20 percent off a meal Monday through Friday from 5 to 7.
Open Monday through Friday for lunch and dinner, Saturday and Sunday for brunch and dinner.