There are dozens, if not hundreds of Italian cafes in New York. With so many fabulous ones strewn throughout the city, it would be virtually impossible to choose the best. La Lanterna, however, is markedly different because of its very romantic appeal. Located on Macdougal Street just a hop, skip, and a jump from other noteworthy Italian cafes such as Cafe Reggio and Cafe Dante, La Lanterna's Greenwich Village neighborhood is almost a second Little Italy. La Lanterna consists of two dimly-lit levels decorated in a dozy fashion, and with its close proximity to the NYU Law School, there is something in this small cafe that stirs visions of an intellectual and scholarly past. During the cold New York winters, a fireplace is ablaze on the lower level, as couples romancing one another and students reading the likes of Nietzsche and Beckett can be seen sipping their espressos while attempting to thaw out. Because it is less visible than many neighboring cafes, at La Lanterna you can avoid the crowds that so often invade Greenwich Village while enjoying a private moment with your companion.