Long time lurker, first time poster. A few friends and I are visiting NYC later this month, and we're looking for a good Italian restaurant, preferably for dinner but open to lunch ideas as well. I've read about places like Babbo and Scarpetta, but we're on a pretty tight budget so we're hoping to find a place where we can eat for under $50, excluding drinks - is this possible at either restaurant? If not, any other restaurants to recommend? Here are the criteria...
Must Have: Great Italian food, < $50 per person excluding drinks, no pizza joints (we're doing that separately).
Nice to Have: Location in or around Little Italy (one of the friends really wants to go there, and we're only going to be in NYC for a few days, so it'd be nice to kill two birds with one stone), more casual than dressy atmosphere.
Thanks in advance!