We finally got to the Diane's "Annex" at the bakery for dinner on Saturday night. We had heard many good things and seen the NYT review.
I don't understand all the hoopla.
The place was full at 9:00 (and people continued coming in til at least 10:30)
First off, they had one poor waiter (felt so badly for him) and a lovely busboy who was dashing in and out the door every two minutes and clearly they could not keep up with the pace. (Although there are only about 7 tables, the running next door for everything is very time consuming, you would guess.)
The food was not outstanding. I had a prosciutto and fig bruschetta type appetizer. It consisted of a slice of prosciutto with goat cheese and fig jam on italian bread toasted. It was quite dry and unispiring. Not to mention that the prosciutto was not nearly as good as what I get at my local italian market.
For dinner I had the mushroom and spinach lasagne. First off, the waiter put in the wrong order for me and my dinner arrived 10 minutes after my hubby finished his meal and close to 11:00 pm! My compensation, one comped glass of wine.
The lasagne was okay. Nothing special. Not a lot of flavor and the pasta was too doughy. (homemade, I presume) Certainly not worthy of the cuisine i've always heard attributed to Diane's.
My husband had the caesar salad which he pronounced "okay." And he is a CS afficianado!
For dinner he had the monkfish in a red sauce, which he actually liked very much, as did the man next to us who had it also.
Overall: Overrated. I certainly hope the restaurant next door is far superior, considering their prices.
And one other thing, the chairs are the most uncomfortable ever. Tiny chairs with rushed seats, not suitable for a dining room at all. Not to mention that the tables are so tiny, your dinner is practically in your lap.